Congratulations to Waterpark RFC whose Under-17 and Under-19 players achieved a magnificent double last week by winning their respective Avonmore Milk Munster League finals in Clonmel.
It was a superb day for the Waterford club’s Youth section as the Under-19s beat Young Munster on an 18-0 scoreline and the Park U-17 side drew 17-17 with their Garryowen.
The U-17 trophy was shared between both sides, as per the tournament rules with Waterpark declared the winners on try countback.
By bringing the cups back to Ballinakill, the Waterpark youngsters emulated their club colleagues of three years ago when the Park Under-16s and Under-18s were the first to do the league final double.
In the Under-17 final, Garryowen winger Patrick Healy got over for a second minute try before Waterpark replied when scrum half Conor Hearne picked from the base of a ruck and scooted through a gap, with his half-back partner Tom Kiersey adding the conversion.
But the Light Blues, despite coming under some pressure before half-time, built an 11-7 lead for the break with out-half Mark McGrath converting two well-struck penalties.
The game ebbed and flowed in the second period, with the quality of rugby consistently high. Park number 8 Damien O’Dwyer starred in defence and attack, and the Waterford youngsters nipped ahead when lock Adam Walsh picked off an intercept and some great support play led to O’Dwyer crashing over out wide. Kiersey’s conversion was out of the top drawer.
Garryowen valiantly levelled the tie with a superb penalty from McGrath, but despite the stalemate, Park’s two tries were enough to see them crowned provincial champions.
Scrum half Paddy Kiersey knocked over an early penalty to set the Park U-19s on the right road in their final. They seized control for much of the opening half, with Kyle O’Donoghue adding an unconverted try.
Kiersey kicked his second penalty, three minutes into the second half, and Park had a firm grip on the trophy when centre Kevin Conway made a stirring break from inside his 22 and outpaced the Young Munster cover as he touched down under the posts, for Kiersey to convert.
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