Friendly 17 September 2022
Ballymoney 14 : 14 Ballymena
Ballymena U18s got their 2022/23 season in motion with a draw away to Ballymoney last Saturday.
This was the first game of the season for the Braidmen who were a little match rusty in the first period of the game conceding tries on 10 minutes from turnover ball in their own 22, Ballymoney running in from close range to score the try which was converted. The away team’s form did not immediately improve as Ballymoney scored directly from the restart, a disjointed chase line and missed tackles costing Ballymena a further 7 points.
But as Ballymena started to find their setup formation and rhythm they played their way back into the game and had most of the possession in the middle third of the game, despite dominating possession and territory.
This possession was rewarded after 50 minutes when flanker Kevin O’Boyle scored a try after a Ballymena attacking line out was played wide, winger Mark McSparren providing the pop pass to the supporting O’Boye.
It was Ballymena who kept pressing in the closing period of the game and winger Ben Shaw scored the next try on 55 minutes after a number of phases had tired the home defence, leaving Shaw to cross the line from close range.
Overall great to see the U18s get a game in after a long pre season, they will start their league campaign next week against Rainey.