Schools International: Friday, April 9Ireland Schools 9 France Schools 3, Dubarry ParkScorers: Ireland: Pens: Brian Collins 3France: Pen: Matthieu Belie
Melia hailed his forwards as "awesome" after they dug in magnificently to steer the Irish youngsters to their third victory of the campaign.
Having picked up heartening victories over England (27-18) and Wales (33-13) in recent weeks, Ireland Schools would have been celebrating a Grand Slam in Athlone, but for the non-participation of Italy and Scotland this season.
"It wasn't the prettiest of games, not the way we wanted to win if it were an ideal world," admitted Melia.
"We hadn't much choice but to rely on the forwards in the second half, we had to keep it tight and they did a fantastic job. They were awesome at times in that spell."
In windy conditions, Irish captain David Pollock and Belvedere prop Cian Healy bossed the pack proceedings and their hard graft earned fly-half Brian Collins his opening penalty successes on 4 and 10 minutes.
While Vasily Artemiev - on the end of a Luke Fitzgerald chip - and Keith Earls - at the base of a pack drive - were both unlucky not to have garnered the game's first try, Castleknock's Collins extended the Irish lead with a 55th-minute penalty.
Matthieu Belie replied for the gutsy visitors two minutes later but missed another shot at the posts after the hour-mark and the Irish held on to bag a Triple Crown of sorts.
(15) Luke Fitzgerald (Blackrock College)(14) Shane Hanratty (Gonzaga College)(13) Mark McCrea (Belfast High School)(12) Keith Earls (St Munchin's College)
Replacements used: Neil Simpson (Belfast Royal Academy) for McInerney, Don Keogh (CBC Cork) for Anderson (both 68 mins). Not used: David Gilchrist (Belvedere College), Alan Cotter (St Munchin's College), David Moore (Blackrock College), James Shiells (Royal School Dungannon), Owen McMurray (Methodist College).
France Schools: M Ospital (Canteau); A Palisson (Dax), S Ternisien (Cassin Bayonne), D Irazoqui (Cassin Bayonne), P Aguillon (Jolimont Toulouse), M Belie (Jolimont Toulouse); M Carabignac (Frouloy Ronnes), J Andoque (Jolmont Toulouse); A Vozelange (Ussel), S Clement (Mirail Toulouse), T Dubarry (Lycee Jaques De Vaucanson), T Lassalle (Cassin Bayonne), J Monribot (Lycee Louis Talence), J Tastet (Lycee Louis Talence), T Combezou (Lycee Ventadour Ussel) (Capt).
Replacements used: B Sore (Lycee Talance) for Andogue (45 mins), B. Deschartres (Lycee Lakanal) for Dubarry (56).
HT: Ireland Schools 6 France Schools 0 Referee: B Robertson (England)