Sligo Rugby Club came from a point down to secure a dramatic win in Division 2C of the All-Ireland League at Upritchard Park in Bangor on Saturday.
Ryan Feehily’s last-minute try was converted by Jack Keegan to turn a 16-15 deficit into a 22-16 win.
It was Feehily’s second try of the game, while Keegan kicked a total of seven points from two conversions and a penalty.
Shane O’Hehir also scored a try for Sligo, a week after making his debut for the Connacht Eagles team in the British & Irish Cup.
Sligo led 7-5 at half-time.
Next up for Sligo is a home game against Seapoint at Hamilton Park at 2.30pm next Saturday, January 28.
Seapoint lost heavily at home to Navan, 42-10, at the weekend.
Results AIL Division 2C
Saturday, January 21
Bangor 16 Sligo 22
Boyne 7 Kanturk 19
Midleton 7 Tullamore 25
Rainey 20 Bruff 17
Seapoint 10 Navan 42
Sligo continue to impress!
Following the mid season Christmas break, Sligo resumed their Ulster Bank League campaign with a trip north to Bangor for the reverse fixture of their last match before the mid season interval. Sligo secured a big win in the previous encounter but travelled to Upritchard Park knowing a they would face a severe challenge from a Bangor outfit eager for revenge.
On a crisp,dry,sunny winter afternoon Bangor kicked off playing into the freshening breeze and immediately put Sligo under pressure in their own 22. Some good play at the breakdown earned a relieving penalty for Sligo but the relief was short-lived as following the resulting lineout Bangor turned the ball over and attacked the Sligo defence. The home pressure was rewarded when outhalf Jason Morgan stepped inside the Sligo defence and raced to the line to touch down 15 metres from the left touch line. The conversion attempt fell short to put the score at 5-0 in favour of the home side.
Sligo responded and worked their way back into the game. The front row of Mark Keegan, Shane O’Hehir and Jamie Bowes were solid at scrum time and the back row of Diarmuid O’Dowd-Hill, the returning Matt Davey and Simon Coulter were busy at the breakdown. Sligo’s patience and pressure was rewarded on 27 minutes. A five metre scrum to the right of the Bangor posts was wheeled slightly left which gave the excellent Ryan Feehily the opportunity to dart through the defence and touch down under the posts. Jack Keegan’s conversion pushed Sligo into a two-point lead at the interval.
Sligo hit again following the resumption with a Shane O’Hehir touchdown following an excellent maul from a close in lineout.
Bangor kept in touch with a Morgan penalty before picking up their second try with twenty minutes remaining.
The home side now had their tails up and their pressure forced Sligo into the concession of the lead on the 70th minute with another Morgan penalty.
Sligo restarted and with some strong running from Daire Byrne worked their way back into the Bangor half. Sligo continued to press but the Bangor defence remained intact. With time running out, man of the match Ryan Feehily broke from a ruck just inside the Bangor 19-metre line and raced through, avoiding three would-be tacklers, to touch down at the right post. Keegan’s conversion was the final act of an excellent competitive encounter.
Sligo now sit comfortably in third place in Division 2C. Next Saturday Seapoint provide the opposition with a 2.30pm kick-off in Hamilton park. Having defeated Seapoint in the away fixture prior to the mid-season break Sligo will be hoping to repeat the dose on home soil next weekend.
Sligo: Jack Keegan, Calum Goddard, Mark Rooney, Daire Byrne, Conor Kerins, Mike Wells, Ryan Feehily, Jamie Bowes, Shane O’Hehir, Mark Rooney, Ciaran Cassidy, Shane Boyle (Capt) Simon Coulter, Matt Davey, Diarmuid O’Dowd-Hill. Replacements: Enda Gavin, Ross O’Boyle, Craig Adams, Jake Sexton, Michael McMorrow