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St. Mary’s Get Off The Mark In Limerick

St. Mary’s Get Off The Mark In Limerick

The Shay Deering memorial trophy is on its way back to Templeville Road following this hard-fought Ulster Bank League win for St. Mary’s College over Garryowen.

Although they went in front courtesy of Declan Cusack's second-minute penalty, Garryowen were eventually outplayed by a more enterprising St. Mary's side in what became a fiesty Dooradoyle duel.

When Garryowen were penalised for hands in the ruck after 26 minutes, full-back Gavin Dunne deservedly drew the Saints level.

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The Dubliners had moved the ball very effectively with some darting runs by centre Mark Sexton keeping the hosts under severe pressure.

Another Dunne penalty before the break had Mary's 6-3 in front at the interval. He punished a Garryowen forward who had roamed offside, just to the right of the posts and on the 22.

The Munster-capped Cusack dropped a goal to tie it up for Garryowen but the game took a twist on 60 minutes. Scrum half Matt D'Arcy got in for a try for the visitors as a consequence of which Garryowen's Paul Neville was sin-binned.

Dunne converted for a 13-6 advantage and Mary's had to show their mettle in seeing out the result.

Garryowen, who included new signings Fergal Lawlor and Lemeki Vaipulu at scrum half at number 8 respectively, exerted some late pressure.

Mary's kept ahead but finished the game with 14 players following prop Rob Sweeney's dismissal, two minutes from the end.

For all their late pressure, the Light Blues could only manage another penalty by Cusack as Peter Smyth's men, who won 39-15 here last February, held on for the points.

Referee: Alan Rogan (IRFU)