A 14-point haul from Chris Quinn was crucial at the Belfield Bowl as Ballynahinch continued their excellent start to the Division 1B campaign with a hard-fought win over UCD.
Like the hosts, Ballynahinch had also enjoyed victories in their opening two Ulster Bank League encounters. They made a bright start to this game, eventually taking the lead 12 minutes in with a penalty from winger Chris Quinn.
The students, who had recorded bonus point triumphs over both Belfast Harlequins and Bruff in their previous fixtures, were finding themselves camped inside their own half.
But they soon settled into the proceedings, and Sam Coghlan Murray touched down in the right corner after 21 minutes following an excellent offload by centre Alex Kelly.
James Thornton was on hand to apply the bonuses, and he was also on target with a penalty eight minutes later from a distance of 40 metres.
This moved UCD into a seven-point lead, but this was wiped out almost immediately by a try and conversion combination from Quinn, who broke free on the right wing to ensure that parity was restored in time for the interval.
‘Hinch were unfortunate not to add to their tally after a period of extended pressure towards the UCD line, and they continued to take the game to ’College after the restart.
This persistence eventually paid off for them after 56 minutes of play when referee Dave O'Flynn awarded a penalty try following a series of scrums towards the UCD whitewash.
Quinn made no mistake with a routine conversion, completing a 14-point turnaround for the County Down outfit.
In a stop-start second half, Thornton reduced the deficit with a penalty on 74 minutes, but a well-worked try for 'Hinch from second row Chris Napier just three minutes later proved to be the decisive moment – despite the best endeavours of UCD late on.
Referee: Dave O'Flynn (IRFU)