Dungannon Thirds started 2020 in top form at Stevenson Park on Saturday afternoon. John O’Neill’s team went 17 points clear in the opening quarter with wingers, Andrew Lee and Bradley Mulholland dotting down for tries on 12 and 14 minutes respectively. Aaron Nelson, who stroked over an early penalty, converted the first and Matthew Rodgers the second. On 25 minutes Andrew Haydock finished off some good work by the pack after Daniel Mikolajczyk had made the hard yards. Dungannon were now cruising 24-0 and it was time for Randalstown to hit back and that they did. Good inter passing led to a score for Paul Laverty and that was converted by Chris McGoldrick. The visitors kept the pressure on and laid siege to the Dungannon line for a full 5 minutes. All credit to Gannon they defended well and the half finished 24-7.
Three minutes into the second half an attacking flurry saw Joseph Cashel crash over for the fourth try with Rodgers adding the extras. It proved to be the only try of the third quarter with Randalstown hitting back to put the hosts under pressure. Once more the home defence held them at bay and as the game went into the final quarter Mulholland scorched down the left wing to score in the corner on 65 minutes. With the score at 36-7, Randalstown now had a mountain to climb. That said, they limited Gannon to just one more try when the industrious Arek Mikolajczyk crashed over in the final phase of the game. Rodgers converted to complete the scoring. Team manager, Brian Steenson bore a broad smile at the finish. It was good to see former Dungannon player, Tony O’Hagan back in town and by all accounts he is doing a good job at Neillsbrook Park.
Dungannon Team:- Aaron Nelson, Andrew Lee, Matthew Irwin, John O’Neill, Bradley Mulholland, Matthew Rodgers, Adam Cranston, Mark Douglas, Daniel Mikolajczyk, Ian Green, Jack McDonald, Matthew Calvert, Stewart McAllister, Andrew Haydock, Arek Mikolajczyk, Joe Cashel, Matthew Stockdale, Fergal Goan.