||29 - 12
Enniskillen Ladies welcomed Ballynahinch last Sunday on a fine, tranquil morning at Mullaghmeen for their first home match of the season.
The game started at a great pace and it was clear from the start that Skins were taking this game head on. The home side were putting all the pressure on from the outset, after 10 mins front row Ashling Maguire broke through the Hinch defence and the resultant ruck saw scrum half Leanne Hall whip the ball out to out half Shauna Murphy for a succession of quick passes that saw a Skins outside back cross the line for a very well deserved try, converted by Murphy.
Skins maintained the intensity with the forwards dominating physicality at the scrum and the breakdown. After another 5 minutes the Enniskillen back line received another clean pass and reacted quickly after a well executed switch between centre Sophie Armstrong and Murphy, breaking for the line but stopped short. Centre Noreen Nethercott was quick to spot the space and went crashing over the line for the second try.
From the restart Hinch regrouped and the home side were finding things increasingly challenging with every ruck becoming more of a duel. Thankfully the scrums were holding strong, with hooker Sinead "Tiger" Tummons winning the ball consistently. Skins’ third try came after winning another successful scrum and the backs exhibited some slick hands to Sophie Armstrong who sprinted over the line for her first try in the maroon of Enniskillen. Leading 17-0 Skins were perhaps lulled into complacency as, after only three phases of play from the counterattack, the visitors went crashing through the Skins defence for a well deserved try. The referee blew the game up which gave the Enniskillen coaches James Carleton & Rodney Balfour time to gather their troops for the second half.
Skins started the second half as they did their first and put strong pressure on Hinch. From an opposition scrum the Skins forward pack worked hard to take the scrum against the head for a firm mark of intent. Fast distribution from Leanne Hall saw the ball whipped out to the backs for their fullback to break through several tackles to score under the posts. Skins started to turn the screw, putting the phases together and working to apply their game plan. A well worked team try saw Nethercott cross the line once again for Skins’ fifth try of the game.
Despite an excellent defensive effort from Skins, with crunching tackles coming in from newcomer Raquel Gonzalez, Hinch managed one more reprisal and exploited a well worked overlap to cross for the final score of the game, leaving the final tally 29-12 to Enniskillen.
Skins Ladies should be very proud of their performance against such an established club and it is clear their side is continuing to develop week to week. A special mention goes to Sophie Armstrong and Raquel Gonzalez in their first appearance for Enniskillen. Training continues Tuesday and Thur at 6:30pm with all newcomers welcome as the ladies build for this Sunday’s fixture home against Cavan.