BALLYMENA under-19s avenged a defeat by Coleraine early in the season by trouncing their ‘derby’ rivals 53-0 on Saturday.
Following an early knock on Coleraine found their scrum on the back foot. Tight head Hyndeman drove strongly to ensure Ballymena won the ball ’against the head’. Lowry scooped up the ball and released Mulholland whose pass released man of the match Fleming. He beat several defenders before touching down under the posts.
The 19s were now on their way and some strong play in the loose from McLoughlin saw the ball moved to hooker Bamber. His deft side-step saw him open space for Kieran Bowes who drove strongly before scoring in the corner.
Ballymena’s game plan played dividends, rather than kick the ball away, out-half Appleton broke a tackle before passing to Foster. His strong run took him past several defenders and he sprinted clear to score under the posts.
With half time coming up the 19s had one further opportunity which saw Fleming scoop up a loose ball to run clear and touch down for his second try.
The second half continued in similar fashion with the Braid boys dominating their rivals in all aspects of the game. McCallion made a strong tackle in the loose and the ball broke to Gilkinson. His pass released McBurney who drove strongly past three tacklers before touching down under the posts. Lowry converted and the 19s were again in control.
Coleraine again tried to threaten the Ballymena line but a loose pass was collected by Rainey who ran the ball back into the Coleraine half. Another strong run from McBurney saw him pass to Mattison who sprinted clear to score beneath the posts.
With McIlwaine continuing to dominate in the loose a slick backline move saw the ball moved to McGarry who gratefully crossed for his first try of the season. Another try from the strong running Foster added to the score before Curtis Bowes finished the rout with a run which took him past four tacklers to score under the posts.
Manager Ryan Wiggins said: “The boys’ improvement has been remarkable and we now hope to take this form into our forthcoming cup matches.”