While the senior side made the ideal start to their European campaign, Ulster Ravens experienced the complete opposite as they lost 34-17 in their opening British and Irish Cup encounter agains the Cornish Pirates.
Ravens coach Allen Clarke will be urgently seeking a turnaround in their fortunes on Friday night when Jersey provide the opposition for the next B&I Cup Pool Six clash at Ravenhill.
The Ravens, though, stayed in contention – and actually led twice – until late in the game when the sin-binning of Mike McComish hurt their cause as the Pirates came away with maximum points after scoring four tries and now sit top of the group.
Winger Peter Nelson scored the only try for the visitors, which came just before the break and cut the Pirates' lead to 13-11. From there, James McKinney's third penalty saw the Ravens in front but then a try from Kieran Goss and two Angus Sinclair penalties put the Pirates 10 points clear.
And though McKinney's fourth penalty made it 24-17, McComish's binning along with the Pirates' bonus point try took it beyond the Ravens with a last penalty coming from Kieran Hallett.