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Youth and experience blend well for Valley

 

By Ronnie Ingram

After a couple of disappointing seasons, Clogher Valley's 18-10 Towns' Cup victory at Ballymoney could well signal the start of a resurgence. A mainly young side, helped by the experienced David Sharkey and captain Michael Trainor, the four times Cup winners yearn for the old days.

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Their strength is in the pack where tight head prop Neil Henderson had a brilliant game with tackle after tackle. A couple of 19 year olds also made their presence felt - Aaron Dunwoody at open side and full-back Ewan Currie.

Up front was where they dominated Ballymoney as they did when the two teams met a few weeks ago, Valley winning 28-0. But this time the home team had done their homework and put up much sterner opposition which led to a well worked try from scrum-half Matthew Steele and a conversion and penalty by out-half John Hyndman

Earlier, after a couple of catch and drives had been pulled down, the visitors changed their tactics to take the lead when Kyle Cobain threw in short to Josh Fegan who returned the ball for the hooker to dash in for a try. Out-half Paul Armstrong added a penalty and later showed his strength to barge over for a try. He added the points and also had a penalty.

Indiscipline cost Ards dearly when they had three players yellow carded in their 22-0 defeat at Randalstown. The home side took full advantage of their disorganised opponents to dominate the second period after earning a 5-0 half-time lead. Winger Coby Mason gathered an off-load to run in from the '22' and further tries followed from close range for No8 David Smyth and hooker Marty O'Neill. Out-half Martin Connolly kicked a penalty and two conversions

Results: Rainey II 7 Armagh II 56, Banbridge II 39 Lurgan 24, Dungannon II 29 Bangor II 20, Omagh II 10 Limavady 11, Ballymoney 10 Clogher Valley 18, Randalstown 22 Ards 0, Lisburn 3 Ballynahinch II 33, City of Derry II 16 Ballymena II 26.

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