Terenure College were in seventh heaven at Musgrave Park today as they enjoyed their second successive bonus point victory over Munster opposition – a runaway 47-0 thrashing of Dolphin.
Terenure followed up last week’s 42-0 home hammering of Young Munster by breaking the 40-point barrier again with seven tries in all – including a hat-trick from fleet-footed winger Harry Moore.
With Lansdowne losing at Ballynahinch, James Blaney’s men are now four points clear at the top of Division 1A ahead of a four-week break in Ulster Bank League fixtures.
The dominant Dubliners showed no mercy to struggling bottom side Dolphin who had an uphill task by half-time, trailing 21-0.
The elusive Moore notched his hat-trick in 60 minutes, taking his haul to five in four league games, while influential number 8 Kyle McCoy joined him on five following a well-taken brace in Cork.
Dolphin assistant coach Barry Keeshan missed a 20th minute penalty, but their scoring chances were few and far between with efforts from Moore (12 and 27 minutes) and McCoy – late on in the first half – putting ‘Nure on course for another big win.
Even McCoy’s sin-binning in the 53rd minute failed to stop the flow of scoring from the visitors as Moore nabbed their bonus point right on the hour mark. McCoy returned to touch down in the 75th minute and late scores from replacement Ian Hanly and scrum half Kevin O’Neill completed the rout.
The surprise result of the day in the top flight saw Ballynahinch end Lansdowne’s winning start to the season with a 14-10 defeat at Ballymacarn Park.
Despite missing some regulars due to Leinster ‘A’ call-ups, Mike Ruddock’s men were expected to beat the County Down outfit and make it four wins on the trot.
However, a bruising first 40 minutes saw the usually reliable Scott Deasy miss three penalties for Lansdowne and it remained scoreless for half-time.
Ballynahinch number 8 Charlie Butterworth, who left Lansdowne in the summer after signing a one-year professional deal with Ulster, clearly relished the opportunity to face his former club.
His opposite number, Lansdowne captain Ron Boucher, broke through for a 60th minute try to cancel out a converted effort from returning ‘Hinch full-back Rodger McBurney ten minutes earlier.
Deasy found his range again with a successful conversion and then a penalty in the 71st minute which had the visitors in front for the first time (10-7).
However, the strong-running McBurney had the final say with a 73rd minute try converted by Richard Reaney, with the hard-fought victory moving ‘Hinch up two places to sixth overall.
It was a day to forget for St. Mary’s College as they suffered their second home loss of the season, going down 26-15 to a resurgent Cork Constitution side.
Darragh Lyons showed his class once more, guiding a youthful Con back-line and proving an able deputy for the injured Gerry Hurley as captain and out-half.
Lyons had Andrew Dorgan – one of last season’s All-Ireland Under-20 winners – alongside him at half-back and they engineered an early lead for the Leesiders thanks to tries from wingers Michael Keyes and Rob Jermyn.
Lyons’ right boot did the rest, opening up a 17-3 gap before a late try from converted flanker Richie Sweeney gave St. Mary’s some momentum at the break.
Just as he did as a lively replacement during last week’s success at Old Belvedere, promising young back rower Nick Timoney made an impact but he lacked support as Mary’s looked set to score a second try.
As the penalties continued to mount against Peter Smyth’s charges, Constitution took chance after chance as the reliable Lyons strung together a hat-trick of second half place-kicks.
That left the hosts 26-10 adrift and a classy try from Dave Fanagan, one of the best Mary’s backs on display, was mere consolation for the home side.
Meanwhile, Young Munster put last Saturday’s nightmare result at Terenure behind them by overcoming Old Belvedere 26-19 in a thrilling contest at Tom Clifford Park.
Both sides had a player sin-binned at different stages and the lead changed hands a number of times after the Cookies turned around 10-8 to the good. Full-back Ben Martin was the star man with a 21-point contribution, including six successful kicks at goal.
Daniel Riordan ensured Old Belvedere got off to a flying start, racing through to touch down in the third minute after he had kicked over the defence.
Riordan’s opposite number Martin responded with a penalty but, in the 27th minute, a penalty from Josh Glynn made it 8-3 after Munsters scrum half Rob Guerin was yellow carded.
The former Shannon player was no sooner back in the action when Martin crossed for the Cookies’ opening try. Number 8 Yasin Browne stole a ‘Belvo lineout and the full-back was on hand to touch down and his own conversion put John Staunton’s side in front at 10-8.
It took Riordan only two minutes of the second period to run in his second try and a Glynn penalty in the 58th minute had the Dublin 4 club 16-10 ahead.
A splendidly-taken try by left winger Derry O’Connor, which Martin converted, edged Munsters back in front – only for Glynn to land his third penalty soon after.
However, two late penalties from the outstanding Martin clinched a galvanising second league victory for the hosts who are now looking more comfortable in seventh place.