Banbridge Academy’s 1st XV progressed to the final of the Danske Bank Schools Trophy with a fine 10 – 5 win over Antrim Grammar School in a hard fought semi-final on Saturday. The Academy started the game well and always looked the more likely to score first and after 13 minutes Centre Ross Cartmill crashed through from a set piece and stepped the last defender to score under the posts. Outhalf Tom Flanagan slotted the conversion. The Academy were in the ascendancy for the rest of the first half but were unable to extend their lead until the 33rd minute when Flanagan converted a penalty. The halftime score was 10-0.
In the second half, playing into the slight breeze, the Academy found themselves under a bit of pressure. Their defence however was resolute and despite Antrim’s best effort’s they were unable to cross the line until the final minute of the game when they drove over it in the corner. The conversion attempt was unsuccessful and the Academy were able to play out final two minutes off the game in the Antrim half. The Banbridge men deserved their win as they were the better team on the day but it was a close game with little between the two teams. It was a good team performance but mention must go to flanker Jonathan Macintosh who had a great game in both attack and defence.
The Academy now play in the final of the School’s Trophy for the second year in a row where their opponents will be for Foyle College from Londonderry. The game will take place on Wednesday, 22 February at Royal School Dungannon with a 2:30 PM kick-off