U11 Rugby v Compass

Wednesday 8th November

              The U11 were again at home this week, this time for the visit of Compass in this 8 a side match. Although the ground was wet, and a blustery cold wind was present, conditions were still there for open running rugby if care and concentration were exercised. Captain Geordie Mac offered the visitors the option to start the match and they elected to take the tap and pass.
                The opening minutes were fairly even with both teams mixing it up through both driving forward up front and moving ball wide as they probed each other’s defence. St. Marys started to get on top, and after some good lead up play through George R and Stewart M, Caelan B finished off well to open the scoring.
                 Both teams were enjoying possession, but the ability of St. Marys to put passes together a lot quicker and smoother was stretching the Compass defence. This time Mitchell C and Mac R were prominent in the lead up to the ball reaching the swift John T out wide who took off and outpaced any covering defenders. 2-0.Soon after more good driving play this time through Geordie Mac, Mac R and George R saw us reach the 22 on the right. From the ruck Caelan B saw no-one guarding the Compass blind side, so he picked up and ran in unopposed to make it 3-0.
             The high pace of the match continued unabated, but both defences were good so that any ground made had to be earned. A strong run from Mac R took him up to the line and he offloaded to Archie J who touched down, but alas he had overshot Mac so no try. Thomas E made amends soon after as he finished off a direct and penetrative run from Jake M. From the restart though the visitors’ prop took the ball on the hoof and went straight through some complacent home tackling to pull a try back on halftime. 4-1
           The 2nd half saw Stewart M off with a hamstring strain and Alex M came on. St. Marys took play into the Compass half and from the breakdown ruck ball was moved wide to John T who finished admirably from far out after breaking a couple of tackles. A few minutes later he followed up with an interception try reading it well as Compass threw ball about in their attempt to close the try count. However Compass then repeated by intercepting a pass themselves and reduced the try gap. This didn’t caution either team from their total rugby approach as a loose Compass pass was picked up off his laces at full speed by Mac R and he romped in from halfway to score.
           Both teams continued to drive at each other looking for holes and the intensity didn’t relent. At the breakdown both teams competed and used the counter ruck well. With 5 minutes remaining, St Mary’s made good use of the “pick and go” and got deep into the Compass ’22. From the last ruck, Alex M got the ball on the right and he switched to the left, straightened and fed Thomas E to finish off. A great bit of forward vision coupled with clear calm thinking from Alex M.
 Finally, on halfway Mac R was in possession wide at left and took off. He was met with cover defence from the try line so he offloaded onto the ever willing and selfless supporting running of Archie J who got his reward with a try! Final score 9-2. Well done to both teams who just wanted to play open rugby and to succeed despite the days tricky conditions.

Mr A Rutherford

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