Garnock Complete Double Over Carrick
As reported by Tom Dickson
On Saturday 15th January Garnock hosted Carrick Rugby Club as their “First Foots” for 2022 at Lochshore on a very windy and rainy day.
Carrick kicked off deep into the Garnock half and gained a penalty for handling the ball in a ruck. The visitors elected for the scrum and although Garnock won the ball Carrick recovered well and ran the ball towards the Garnock try line for Giles Skiba to score well out. The difficult conversion from Liam Wyllie was successful and with 4 minutes on the clock Carrick were in front at 0 -7. This reversal seemed to settle Garnock and for the next spell of five minutes they camped well inside the Carrick half with the forwards dominating the set plays. From a Garnock lineout close to the Carrick try line the ball was fed out to the backs and Ross Brockett rounded off a slick handling move to score near the posts. Keir Walker converted to tie the scores at 7 points apiece after 10 minutes played.
Five minutes later Garnock moved in front when Craig Williams spotted a gap and powered his way over the try line with a powerful run from 30 metres out. Walker duly converted to make the score 14 – 7.
At this point Garnock were much the better side but stout Carrick defence thwarted the Garnock attack.
Their third try was scored by Jared Reekie after a penetrating dodging run by Per Jacobson run from half way who fed the ball to the winger to round off the move at the posts. Again, Walker converted. Twenty-five minutes and Garnock were in front at 21 – 7.
In the last move of the first half Garnock secured the Bonus Point try when Rory Walker outpaced the cover defence of Carrick when he was released after the Garnock pack won a scrum “against the head” and fed the ball to their speedy threequarters.
Half time came with Garnock comfortably ahead at 28 points to 7.
The second half saw a refreshed Carrick come more into the game and they were playing a more attacking game. However, the Garnock squad held strong and were able to hold their line.
At this point and with both sides willing to run the ball at every chance offered, the spectators were treated to an entertaining game.
In the 65th minute Garnock managed to get the ball over the try line but referee Steven deemed the ball to have been held up.
Carrick kicked to touch, the put-in was won by Garnock, they elected to drive to the visitors try line, the ball was fed to Lewis McGeachy. The big No.5 powered through would-be tacklers and scored at the posts. Dead-Eyed Walker converted and Garnock moved to 35 – 7.
With time running out Carrick enjoyed a spell of dominance and tested the Garnock defending. The home squad absorbed this pressure and gradually began to regain the upper hand. After winning a set scrum at their own 10 metre line the ball was fed out to the backs. Slick passing found Brockett in full flight and the centre sped in for a try near touch. The conversion was missed but Garnock moved further ahead at 40 – 7 with 6 minutes remaining.
In the last play and the last minute of the game Garnock won a scrum on the Carrick 22 metre line. Connor Wilson was alert and picked up the ball. He “sprinted” towards the line, brushed off a couple of tackles to score in the corner. The conversion was missed, the referee blew for time up and Garnock recorded a 45 point to 7 point victory.
The Garnock squad on the day was (1-19) :Luke Wynn, Richard O’Neill, Matt Shiells, Joe Chapman, Lewis McGeachy, Rory Dominy, Davy R Miller, Stuart Wilson, Keir Walker, Per Jacobson, Jared Reekie, Rory Walker, Ross Brockett, Tony Woods, Craig Williams, Fraser Miller, Connor Wilson, James Wright and Grant Ruxton.