Dolphin ran out bonus point winners in Sunday afternoon’s AIB League tie at Musgrave Park, racing clear of UCD thanks to three second half tries.
AIB LEAGUE: DIVISION ONE: Sunday, March 8
DOLPHIN 29 UCD 12, Musgrave Park
Scorers: Dolphin: Tries: Barry O’Mahony, Paul Hurley 2, Rory Kenneally; Cons: Barry Keeshan 3; Pen: Barry Keeshan
UCD: Pens: Noel Reid 4
The Cork side, who are back up to fifth in the Division One standings after this result, turned pressure into points as they pulled clear of the students after the break.
Beaten by Cork Constitution last time out, Dave O’Mahony’s charges were determined to return to winning ways and they had to do so without two of their big hitters, Munster duo James Coughlan and Nick Williams.
Lowly UCD opened the scoring with a third-minute penalty from teenager Noel Reid but the home side hit the front, six minutes later, when Ireland Club International flanker Barry O’Mahony touched down from close range.
Barry Keeshan missed the conversion and UCD held their own until they were caught napping by a quickly-taken penalty from Gary O’Keeffe.
On 18 minutes, Dolphin scrum half O’Keeffe took a quick tap penalty under the visitors’ posts and sent the onrushing Paul Hurley over for a try which Keeshan converted.
UCD dug their heels in and either side of half-time, Reid kicked two more penalties to close the gap to 12-9.
Despite this, Dolphin were able to remain calm and gradually up the tempo in the final quarter and close out the win.
Some enterprising play ended with winger Rory Kenneally touching down in the 50th minute and Keeshan added the extras.
Reid replied with a 62nd minute penalty but Hurley sliced through for his second try and Dolphin’s bonus point score, 11 minutes from the finish.
AIB Club International star Keeshan left-footed the conversion through the posts and also added a late penalty to give his side a winning margin of 17 points.