Rainey Medallion win thriller against RBAI

THE ‘David Allingham Forklift Safety Training’ sponsored Rainey ES Medallion won their first game of the season against the might of Belfast giants RBAI. The local boys have displayed remarkable improvement this season and have been very unfortunate in a number of their games.

However, on Saturday their performance was also rewarded with a win, which delighted coaches Stuart Staples, Michael Sargent and Noel Sargent. The final score was 22-17, with a hatrick of tries from Calvin Smith and a try and conversion from Mark Rooney.

The ‘P Keenan Road Surfacing’ sponsored Rainey ES 1st XV had a titanic struggle against last years Schools’ Cup finalists RBAI. In a very close first half Rainey gave as good as they got. They played at an intensity that was very encouraging and which on a few occasions caused Inst problems. They had opportunities after a few line breaks but were unable to finish. Michael Dawson had a super game up front, along with Jonathan Lees and Michael Kelly.

The local boys defence also put the visitors under pressure, with Jack McCalmont doing great work. In the backs Arran Murphy kicked with intelligence and Martin Connolly threatened the Inst defence. RBAI scored once in the first half to led 7 – 0 at half time. In the second half Rainey took a number of injuries which upset their continuity. As the physicality and fitness of the Belfast boys told and they ran in a few late tries to win by a faltering 30 -0 score line. Although defeated the Rainey boys can take many positives from this game. If they maintain this standard against lesser opposition then they will win a number of games in future.

The 2nd XV also hosted RBAI and also put in a promising performance. They were on top for long periods of the game and were unfortunately affected by the injuries in the 1st XV game. With players moving up as replacements on the 1ST XV they team work was affected, which probably prevented them from winning the game. The finished with a respectable 19 – 19 draw and still have only been beaten once this season. Their try scores were Jamie Noble with 2 and Rigan Sanderson.

The U13 A and B and the U14 A and B travelled to Belfast to take on the same opponents. RBAI have a much bigger pool of players to pick from, hence these fixtures are always very difficult for the junior teams. Both U13 teams put in fantastic performances and can be very proud of their results. The ‘A’ team drew 19 – 19 with RBAI scoring a late try to snatch a draw. The try scorers were Adam Patrick, Richard Winder and Jonathan Hanna. Adam also kicked two conversions.

The ‘B’ team impressively won 22 – 20 with tries from Jamie McCrum, Andrew Nevin, Matthew Young and Adam Thornton.

The U14’s came up against two very strong RBAI teams. The ‘A’ team fought from start to finish and displayed a great attitude throughout but eventually went down 40 – 0. The ‘B’ team also gave their all but went down 34 -10 with tries from Michael Lynn and Robert Riddell.

Congratulations to Rainey ES players Jamie Noble and David McClelland who have both been selected for the Ulster Schools Under 17 Development Squad.

This Saturday’s fixtures are against Limavady GS. The 1st, 2nd and 3Rd XVs are at away. The Medallion, U14 B and U13 B are at home. The home Kick offs are at 10.00am.

On Thursday 20th October the U14 A and B play King Edwards School, Stratford with a 3.00pm kick off.

On Friday 21st October the U12 A, B, C, and D teams play their first games in Rainey colours when they travel to play Larne GS. Kick offs are at 2.30pm. All support is very welcome for all the above games.