Larne get the bonus point win v PSNI
By Stephen Johnston
Larne took to this league match against PSNI knowing they needed a good win to start pushing their season onwards and upwards.
In very gusty conditions at exposed Newforge Larne played into the breeze and started reasonably well but lacked composure and too many early mistakes allowed PSNI out of jail.
The game was error ridden both teams failing to really get to terms with the strong wind. The PSNI scrum half peppered the Larne back 3 with high balls but they didn’t get much change out of it.
Eventually Larne started to put some phases together and after strong running by Matthew Agnew and Ryan McAlister with Ryan Garrett sniping around the rucks it was indeed the Larne 9 who exploited space close to the PSNI line to score, Phil Andrews added the extra points.
Larne picked up the pace and their pack started winning good line out, Gareth Jamison and Eddie hunter to the fore, from one attack Jordan Burns chased a kick through but the dead ball line beat him, Unfortunately he (Burns), suffered a bad ankle injury and was carried off 32 mins in.
Shortly after Larne found more space on the narrow side and Colin McKinty scored wide out, Phil Andrews added the difficult conversion.
Larne added a third score after good phases and hands allowed Ryan Garrett to scorch up the touchline to score again.
Larne playing with strong wind into the second half, seemed to lose their way as the game became scrappy and errors again. To their credit, PSNI started running hard around the fringes snd too many missed tackles by Larne allowed them their best spell of the match . It was only their mistakes close to the larne line that allowed
Larne to kick out and relieve the pressure.
It took half way into second half for Larne to secure a bonus point win with Ryan Garrett picking up his trio and the added conversion by Andrews who was having a great day kicking from hand and ground in his first match at 15.
Larne continued to apply pressure to PSNI who were well beaten now and after good running from Agnew and McKinty Larne added their 5th try.
Overall a satisfactory result if at times scrappy and fill of handling errors. Having no match last week would not of helped but Larne know they need to up their performance in coming weeks with difficult opposition ahead of them.
Ryan Garrett had an excellent match as did Phil Andrews , Joseph Johnston , Gareth Jamison , Eddie hunter , Matthew Agnew and Colin Mckinty, all having very strong games but Ryan McAlister gets man of the match with an excellent return at 6.