Grosvenor RFC claimed the McCrea Cup yesterday afternoon following a 50 – 19 win against Queen’s University 2nd XV at Ravenhill.

Despite the overwhelming scoreline it took Grosvenor a while to fully overcome the students who were well in the game up until the final quarter.

The Stags got off to the best of starts with scrum half Allen McCluggage stretching over the line after a couple of minutes McCluggage converted his own try to give grosvenor a 7 – 0 lead.

Queens responded well and shaded the remainder of the first quarter but a couple of loose passes and the strong Grosvenor defence kept them scoreless.

Having soaked up a fair bit of pressure, Grosvenor broke upfield at the start of the second quarter and showed good composure to maintain possession until centre Jos McCloskey spotted a gap and wriggled over close to the posts. McCluggage converted to stretch the lea to 14 – 0.

In a bit of a purple patch for the Championship side, they notched up their third try shortly after, with outhalf Peter Davison taking a couple of defenders over the line with him. McCluggage missed the conversion but he stepped up shortly after to knock over a penalty to extend Grosvenor’s lead to 22 – 0.

Queen’s deserved something for their for their first half efforts and they got their reward with minutes to go, Rory Nicholl diving over in fine style after a quick penalty. James Creighton added the conversions to see the teams turn round with Grosvenor leading 22 – 7.

The students pulled it back to 22 -14 shortly after the restart after replacement hooker Alex Elmore barged over and Creighton converted and despite Matthew Cahoon responding for Grosvenor, with McCluggage inevitably converting, Queen’s were still well in the game with the score at 29 – 14.

However, Grosvenor took the sting out of the game when Davison went over for his second score, McCluggage’s conversion rattling the scoreboard along to 36 – 14  and, despite Creighton crossing for his second score shortly after, the students took more and more risks as they chased the game.

Grosvenor pounced on the Queen’s mistakes and Matt Allen and Conor McKee oth crossed to put some icing on the cake. McCluggage converted both to take Grosvenors haul to 50 points.

Final Score: Grosvenor 50 Queens university II 19

We caught up with Grosvenor scorers Allen McCluggage and Jos McCloskey after the game.

Photo credit – Bob Given Photography & John McMurtry

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