Banbridge Academy and Dromore High School played out a hard-fought 8-8 draw in the Schools’ Cup, 2nd Round on Saturday.
A massive crowd, well in excess of 1000 people, gathered to watch the local derby at Banbridge’s playing fields. The opening stages were tense with neither team really able to exert any dominance. Defences were on top as both teams showed nerves on the big occasion. Dromore opened the scoring on 25 minutes with a penalty from their Outhalf but the rest of the half was played out in middle of the pitch with neither team able to take advantage. Both teams showed great endeavour and effort but mistakes meant there were no clear cut chances to score.
The second half, however, was a more one-sided affair as Banbridge Academy came to the fore and after a sustained period of pressure, where they were held up over the line twice, Hooker Timmy Beattie finally scrambled over in the corner putting the Academy in the lead. Outhalf Ross Cartmill was just wide with the kick. Banbridge kept up this pressure and on 60 minutes Cartmill slotted a penalty to bring the lead out to 8-3. With 7 minutes to play, Dromore made their first meaningful foray into Banbridge territory and a well-worked move at the front of the line-out resulted in their hooker squeezing in for the try. With just minutes left, Banbridge once again went on the offensive and after a series of rucks Dromore infringed but unfortunately Cartmill was just wide with a difficult penalty chance.