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Blackrock End Cork Con’s Winning Run

Blackrock End Cork Con’s Winning Run

Blackrock College blew the AIB League Division One title race wide open with a stunning win over table-toppers Cork Constitution at Stradbrook on Saturday.

AIB LEAGUE: DIVISION ONE: Saturday, March 28

BLACKROCK COLLEGE 23 CORK CONSTITUTION 7, Stradbrook

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Scorers: Blackrock College: Tries: Gary Brown, Shane Monahan, Kyle Tonetti; Con: Kyle Tonetti; Pens: Kyle Tonetti 2
Cork Constitution: Try: Darragh Lyons; Con: Darragh Lyons
 

Cork Con, unbeaten in the league since early December, looked on course for another win when leading 7-3 at the interval.

Out-half Darragh Lyons had cut through for a sixth-minute try, which he converted himself. Lyons intercepted a pass from Simon Morrissey before racing clear of the cover on an excellent 60-yard dash.

Lyons’ opposite number Kyle Tonetti, standing in for the injured Darragh Fitzpatrick, kicked Blackrock’s first-half points from a penalty, while Lyons also missed some kickable penalties.

But the Blackrock forwards, including Des Dillon and Shane Byrne, turned the tables in the second half after the visitors had enjoyed most of the ball in the opening 40 minutes.

With a solid platform of possession, ‘Rock’s back-line, arguably the best in the top flight, thrived as the game wore on.

Tries from centre Gary Brown, winger Shane Monahan and the increasingly influential Tonetti put the game beyond Con’s reach.

The Leesiders were frustrated into submission as they were pinned back in their own 22 for much of the second half.

‘Rock upped the pace and they grabbed the score of the day on 66 minutes when the imposing Monahan finished off a well-worked team move by racing in under the posts for Tonetti to convert.

Tonetti’s sidestepping try and subsequent penalty pushed the Dubliners into a 23-7 lead and there was no way back for Con, who had winger Cronan Healy sin-binned.

Blackrock scrum half David Moore was also yellow carded, in the closing stages, for a late tackle.