Lurgan under 17s hosted Newry at Pollock Park last Saturday in what turned out to be a keenly contested game.
Although there were some absentees, Newry were good enough to lend the home side some players in order that the game could go ahead. Just as well as it turned out to be a well contested game.
Both sides were determined to play a running game with the visitors centre pairing in particular causing havoc at times in the home sides defence. Within a short period of time, the visitors had built up a commanding lead. However the home side were not to be outdone and, after a superb break down the wing and some solid support work, William Walker received a pass that sent him scurrying for the line. He avoided three tackles and dived over in the corner for a well finished try.
In the second half, the home side stepped up the pressure and posed a number of threats to the Newry line. Impressive rucking from the forwards eventually led to Chris Breen powering his way over the line for a score. A few minutes later, in almost exactly similar circumstances, Breen was over for his second after wrestling his way through the defence. Captain Max Hamilton slotted the conversion. Newry however did not lie down and some fine running and link work saw them increase their lead on several occasions.
Just before full time, a pick and drive from the base of the scrum saw Breen gaining ground. From the ruck following the tackle, three phases of play led to Matthew Walker crossing the line for the home sides fourth and final try.
Despite the loss, all the home players can be proud of their display and attitude through out the game. With his crunching tackles, hard ball carrying and superb support work, number 8 Chris Breen was deservedly man of the match.