Longford seconds put down a good performance at CPL Park against a very strong Ashbourne side and despite the loss they will be happy to have avoided ending the season with the brush. Breaking the duck means that they head off to Portarlington next Sunday looking for the first win of the season.
Longford led for most of the game, but as the endurance bar lowered at the close of the game Ash ran in two tries in the final ten minutes to come away with the win. This was an even contest in the first half and it was a case of both sides putting up good defences.
The first score came right on the 40 when Longford were awarded a penalty. Outhalf Niall Keenan hit the mark to give the home side a well deserved lead at the break. Longford’s three points kept them in front right up to the 50th minute when scrum half Lorcan Connolly extended it to eight. Longford had put together some good phases with carries from Ian Farrell, Fergal McGlade and Peter Mimnagh all pressing the visitors back into their own 22.
With a ruck just under five metres from the line Connolly showed great awareness to pierced the gap and dive over the line putting Longford two scores ahead on 8-0. Unfortunately the Meath men came right back and a penalty for not releasing reduced the lead to five.
In the final ten Ashbourne ran in two unconverted tries against a flagging Longford defence. There were plenty of positives from this game and Longford showed that they have something to build on for the final phase of the season. The contribution of Dylan Quinn, Mick Murphy and Pat Farrell were instrumental posing a real threat to Ashbourne.
In fairness to the home side, this was the best 80 they have had all season and the losing bonus point is a welcome addition. With this solid performance by the team, and particularly the front row, Longford will be hoping that they can put a fatter and more respectable figure on their points tally in the final two games.