RUGBY: Ballyclare Fourths see off Ports

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With the seniors having no game, the spotlight was on Ballyclare’s 4th XV at the weekend and they delivered a fine 43-13 win against Portadown IV at The Cloughan in a Junior League Section 5 fixture.

Nathan Loughlin, who was a regular in last season’s 1st XV, had his first outing of the season, showing his class in the back division with a brace of first-half scores.

Last season’s skipper, Marc Fox, matched this with a personal double, while Samuel Logan also got his name on the scorecard. With John Wasson adding two conversions, Ballyclare were well on the way to victory with a 29-3 lead at the interval.

Good work by the pack led to young Luke Baillie crossing for a score, before Chris Gillen set up the final touchdown by Alan Jones from a quickly taken short penalty, while Wasson doubled his tally with two more conversions.

The Ports’ reply was restricted to two unconverted scores.

The Junior League Section 1 local derby between Carrick III and Ballyclare III ended all square, 29-29, at Tom Simms Memorial Park.

The Beasant brothers, Stephen and Peter, figured prominently for Ballyclare with each scoring a try, while winger Tom Wilson crossed twice.

The hosts seemed to have wrapped up the points going into the closing minutes leading 29-24, but there was a tense finish when Craig Agnew levelled the scores.

The result hinged on the conversion, but a victory was denied for the visitors when the ball hit the upright and bounced out.