Dundalk RFC's Derek Williams. (Pic: Ciarán Culligan)
Leinster League Division 1A
Boyne RFC 20 Dundalk 26
Dundalk RFC scored three tries in the closing quarter to secure a memorable comeback victory in their north-east derby with Boyne on Saturday afternoon.
Trailing 20-7, Dundalk were handed a lifeline when the home side were reduced to 14 players and Mike Walls’ men capitalised, scoring three tries in the closing twenty-minutes to claim their second away win of the campaign.
Boyne hit the front almost straight from the kick-off when full-back Eoghan Duffy crossed. The conversion was missed, however, within ten-minutes, the hosts had registered another try and when they added the extras, Dundalk trailed 12-0.
The Mill Road men hit back with a try of their own when out-half Gearóid McDonald touched down in the corner before the same player converted to close the gap to five-points.
Though, a Boyne penalty extended the gap back out to eight-points at the interval.
And the Drogheda outfit went further ahead early in the second-half when scoring their third try. However, crucially, the conversion was missed.
After the sending off, Dundalk took control. Having been awarded a succession of penalties, McDonald gave the visitors a platform by kicking to touch, from which Jonathan Gray touched down following a maul drive.
McDonald converted before he completed the turnaround to put Dundalk one-point in front after Daragh Conroy crossed for a try having picked off the base of the ruck.
Boyne were out on their feet by this point and Dundalk drove home their dominance with the final play – to secure the bonus point victory – as Tiernan Gonnelly went over. McDonald missed the ‘extras’ attempt from tight on the touchline.
However, victory stands them in good stead ahead of next weekend’s visit of Wicklow.
Dundalk RFC: Jonathan Gray, Seán Arrowsmith, John Smith; Hamish Walker, Niall Smullen; Enda Murphy, Alistair McCormack, Tiernan Gonnelly; Mike Walls, Gearóid McDonald; Laurence Steen, Jonathan Williams; Derek Williams, Robert Wiliams, Daragh Conroy
Reps: Robert Farrell, Ciarán Brannigan, Joe Marks, Peter O’Neill, Owen McNally