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A clean sweep for Garryowen 13s in tournament

By Garryowen correspondent
Annual U13 Pat Lawlor tournament at UL:
THE annual U13 rugby tournament in honour of the late Pat Lawlor, played on the grounds of UL Bohemians in Annacotty, celebrated its 34th year last Saturday. 12 teams from North Munster and Connacht entered the draw on this beautiful sunny Saturday in April and a strong Garryowen U13 contingent supplied two of these 12 teams. The matches are played at half pitches with 10 players per team on the pitch. At seven minutes a side, the focus is more on ball movement and running rugby than on set-play, scrummaging and rucking. The teams were split into three groups of four, with the group games in the morning and followed by play-offs for the Pat Lawlor Cup and the Shield Competition in the afternoon.
The group games kicked off at 11 in the morning under the glaring April sun. Garryowen Whites played in a group with UL Bohemians Blue, Killaloe/Ballina and Kilrush and had a tough start into the tournament. Despite some really good play and team work Garryowen Whites lost all their group games and finished up at the bottom of the table. It was however noticeable that our boys became stronger and stronger as the games progressed, only narrowly losing their last group game and progressed into the Shield competition.
Garryowen Blues in a group with local rivals Shannon, Young Munster and Newcastle West had a good start into their day winning all of their group games and displaying solid team performances. As winners of their group the Blues qualified for the play offs in the Cup competition.
The play-offs in the afternoon started off well for Garryowen, with the Blue team winning their quarter final game against Newcastle West 3-0. The Whites continued what was to become a memorable day for Garryowen underage rugby with a brilliant 5 – 1 victory in the Shield Semi-finals against UL Bohemians Blue, a shock defeat for the home team. Garryowen advanced into the Shield finals, where a strong team from Shannon waited for them.
In the meantime the Garryowen Blues played in the Cup Semi-finals against UL Bohemians Red with another solid and strong team performance winning 2:1.
The Shield final between Garryowen Whites and Shannon was a real cracker of a game. Shannon scored the first try but Garryowen equalised soon after. Shannon continued their pressure and were soon 2:1 up but Garryowen counter-attacked and equalised. 2:2 meant that the game went to extra time. Shannon put one more score on the board but with a last minute move Garryowen Whites again equalised. It was 3:3 after extra time and after some deliberations and calculations between officials and coaches Garryowen Whites was declared Winner of the Shield Competition based on the total number of scores achieved throughout the tournament. Both Garryowen teams erupted in delight.
In the last game of the day the Blue team – boosted by the emphatic win of their friends – faced Old Crescent in the Cup final. The two teams had met already a few times this season and all these encounters were very close. Today however and right from the start of the game it was different – Garryowen completely dominated their opponents. Old Crescent faced wave after wave of running Garryowen lines. Initially Old Crescent bravely held their lines but eventually they faltered under the Garryowen pressure. With a final score of 2:0 the Blues deservedly won the Cup competition and ended a fantastic and memorable day for Garryowen underage rugby!!
A clean sweep for Garryowen Underage Rugby and a first double for the club in the history of this traditional tournament! Well done boys!!!
Garryowen Whites lined out as follows: Hughie Liston, Adam Jordan, Cathal Colgan, Edward McGrath, Eoin Sweeney, Kieran Roche, Rory Quilligan, Luke Willis, Oisin Portley, Oisin Williams, Rory Donnarumma, Rian McNamara, Scott Ronan
Garryowen Blues Lined out as follows: Thomas Collins, Liam Angermann, Brian O’Keeffe, Shaughan Hanrahan, Adam McMahon, Adam Shawyer, Colin Lew, Joe McEnery, Alan Fitzgerald, Andrew Lyons, Scott White, Jordan Power, Darragh Lehane, Rory Litherland

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