Ballymena 3’s travelled to City of Derry and won 46-12
After the disappointments of lasts week defeat to Rainey Ballymena set off knowing that they were heading to one of the hardest grounds to get a result in. With a few changes to the squad after injuries the selected 15 set about getting the first points of the season.
Ballymena got off to a great start when a strong run from Donny Mckendry drew in the covering defence enabling him to release full back Rory Smith to crash over for his first try. Maury McDowell kicked the conversion, 0-7. Derry got right back in the game after some poor defending from the braid men to score under the posts. The conversion was added, 7-7. With 20 minutes of the game gone and both sides showing good defence it was a moment of magic from Rory Smith which saw him chip the defence before racing to score under the posts. Rory added his own conversion, 7-14. Ballymena where now starting to stamp their authority on the game and after great hands by the backs, centre Alan Smith found space to run from his own half and score under the posts. Alan added his own conversion, 7-21. Ballymena went on the attack again from the restart and winger Warren Beattie was unlucky when some last ditched tackling held him up over the try line. From the 5 metre scrum the Ballymena forwards worked hard to secure the ball before Scrumhalf Jamie Cunningham released Alan Smith to score his second try. The conversion was missed, half time 7-26.
At the start of the second half Ballymena had a try from Jonny McKeown disallowed as the referee could not see the grounding of the ball. After a period of rugby being played in he centre of the pitch and a lot of errors from both sides the game again burst into life when full back Rory Smith sprinted down the wing before popping the ball back inside. The ball found the charging Alan Smith who scored his third try of the game after a big hand off on the defending full back. The conversion was missed, 7-31. Derry had a spell of possession and were deep in the Ballymena half when the hard working forwards of Ballymena turned the ball over. The ball was cleared by Alan Smith who’s electric pace saw him speed past the Derry defence to collect the ball and score under the posts. An out of breath Alan missed the conversion, 7-36. Derry rallied and went on the attack again. They were awarded a scrum 5 metres out from the braids men try line but a great tackle on the Derry number 8 saw him get overturned. The quick footed scrum half raced the length of the pitch to score. The conversion was missed, 7-41. Derry stuck at it and were rewarded with a breakaway try when 5 minutes from the end. The conversion was missed, 12-41. The final score of the game came from the restart when Derry made a mess of the catch allowing flanker Donny Mckendry to pick up the ball and power his way over the line. The conversion was missed. Final score 12-46.
Team- Adrian Hayes, Peter Taylor, Jarod Bowes, Mark Ferguson, Donny Mckendry, Cory Millar, Gary Donnelly, A.Mckeown, Jamie Cunningham, Maury McDowell, Warren Deans, Alan Smith, Jonny Mckeown, Warren Beattie, Rory Smith