This was an old school Friday Night Lights AIL classic. There was the good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between for both sides.
Bohs came out on top with a final scoreline of 18-14, but this one was not for the feint hearted.
Cashel opened the scoring with a penalty off the tee from Steve McMahon, before a great response from Bohs led to a strong maul being pulled down right at the try line, referee Glenn Sheridan had no choice but to award a penalty try.
An offside penalty gave Cashel the opportunity to bring the score back to the minimum. Some solid attack shape our pressure on the Cashel defence, before Harry Byrne knocked over three points for the home team to extend the lead to 4.
Just before half time, Darragh O’Gorman, who was excellent throughout, made a clever decision and intercepted a ball well inside his own half before galloping the rest off the field to dot down and bring the score to 15-6 just before half time. Scrum half Alan Kiely unfortunately had to be substituted at half time due to injury also.
Cashel reduced the lead to 15-9 with another penalty, before one of the turning points in the game occurred. Eoin Sweeney was issued a yellow card for a high challenge to the chest of Darragh Lyons. But before the game could restart, this was surprisingly upgraded to a red card offence. This left Bohs down to 14 men for the meander of the game, and up against it. Cashel used the 50/22 rule cleverly, and with the advantage of the extra man the mauled over. The conversion was missed, leaving Bohs ahead 15-14.
Again the response was brilliant for our guys. Captain Paul Clancy led the team and was covering everything that moved in defence, while Kieran O’Shea and Jay Traynor were exceptional around the park. Harry Byrne kicked a pressure penalty to extend the lead to 18-14. Niall Queally then was issued a yellow card, before the second red card of the night was given to Ben Swindlehurst. Down to 12 men, our guys showed unbelievable cohesion and strength. Joe Johnson made his AIL return for the club, and put in some key tackles at telling times, as did flanker Teddy Rowesome. A big hit from Jay Traynor forced a knock on from Cashel, and Bohs came away with the four points.
Some harsh lessons learned, but some incredible character shown.”
Photos by Ed Irwin