BUCCANEERS J1’s threw themselves a lifeline when winning their basement battle 27-23 against their Sligo counterparts at The Green, Creggs, on Saturday night. This Connacht Junior 1A League encounter ebbed and flowed with the lead changing hands on a number of occasions.

Sligo scored a penalty either side of Michael Hanley’s penalty before Robert Enraght-Moony scored a smashing try though the conversion from in front of the posts was surprisingly missed. Sligo added another pair of penalties before Fergus Galvin got over for an unconverted try that put Buccs ahead by the minimum 13-12 at halftime.

Following the change of ends, Hanley got a blockdown to score a try which he also converted to edge Buccs further ahead. But Sligo then notched a brace of tries to retake the lead and go 23-20 ahead. However, gallant Buccs had the final say when Daly scored a try in the corner and Hanley landed a splendid conversion to give Buccs a crucial 27-23 victory.

Buccs scrum was well on top with Sean O’Connell and Cedric Forkam outstanding. Here a special worth of praise for club stalwart Rory Grenham who played 70 minutes as substitute at UL Bohemian and then travelled to Creggs where he put in another serious shift for an hour. Hopkins and Hanley also played in Limerick where Galvin was an unused substitute; wonderful commitment by these young players and also by player/coach Michael Harding.

Buccs four tries earned them a bonus point win but Sligo’s losing bonus point keeps the north-westerners in the play-off berth on scoring difference. Both teams have two matches remaining as they strive to avoid the automatic relegation berth. However, this win gives Buccs a fighting chance to edge into the play-off spot.

Buccaneers RFC greatly acknowledges the support of Creggs RFC in making their excellent new 4G pitch available for this ‘home’ fixture to Buccaneers.

BUCCANEERS:- G.Lynch; Eoin O’Reilly, R.Enraght-Moony (captain), F.Hopkins, Colin Daly; M.Hanley, G.Fallon; C.Forkam, D.Buckley, S.O’Connell; R.Flanagan, F.Galvin; D.Touhey, M.Harding and R.Grenham. Replacements:- T.Thompson, S.Flynn, J.Kelly, A.Hanley and N.So.