Ballyshannon met their old adversaries Clogher Valley in Fivemiletown on Saturday in the first game in the league.
Clogher Valley 7
Ballyshannon enjoyed a honeymoon season last year winning both the League and The Ravenhill Cup, but can expect a sterner year as the other teams in the league will be better prepared.
If the game on Saturday is anything to go by we can look forward to a very enjoyable season as the standard of rugby was of the highest quality.
From the kick-off Ballyshannon won the ball and didn’t allow the Clogher men to get their hands on it for five minutes. Ballyshannon pinned the home side back in their own half but try as they might they could not put points on the board.
This changed in the 13th minute when man of the match Brian Killalea received a ball from a tap penalty and bulldozed his way over the line, knocking countless Clogher men out of his way in the process.Ray Gallagher converted the try and added another three points from a penalty to leave the Ernesiders leading by ten.
Ballyshannon committed a cardinal error just before the break and allowed Clogher Valley to score a try which brought them back into the game.
The second half was a carbon copy of the first with Ballyshannon applying all the pressure but getting no return.
The handling and kicking of the ball was first class by Ballyshannon who were dominant in the scrums and enjoyed success in the lineouts.
Ray Gallagher added another three points to the Ballyshannon score to ease the nerves. Clogher tried hard to snatch victory at the end but credit must go to the Ballyshannon defence for holding them out. This was a team effort where everyman played his part.