Plymouth College Sevens claim Devon U18s crown
PLYMOUTH College students came through a gruelling day of sevens rugby to claim the Devon U18s title.
The college team (pictured right) won all six of their pool matches and knock-out fixtures to emerge winners from a nail-biting final against Exeter College.
In a tense final, Plymouth and Exeter could not be separated at full-time.
Plymouth had taken a 14-0 lead before Exeter battled back to level the tie at 14-14, resulting in a limb-tearing and lung-busting added session for the two tiring sides.
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With both teams fighting fatigue, it was only fitting that player of the tournament – Ollie Clenaghan – broke free to score the deciding points and seal the title for his side.
Plymouth's pool victories had been achieved against Petroc, Tavistock College and fellow finalists Exeter.
The Hyde Park-based school had comfortably defeated Shebbear College 31-10 in the quarter-finals before their hard-fought semi-final with Blundell's.
Richard Edwards, Plymouth College's director of rugby, paid tribute to his players.
He said: "This was a great team effort and all players should take great pride in their achievement.
"Minds will, no doubt, now be focused on the Daily Mail Vase quarter-final against Tiffin School."
Plymouth College's showdown with Kingston-upon-Thames' Tiffin will be at Delgany Sports Ground today (2.30pm).
Plymstock Oaks U13...0 Stonehouse Sharks U13...43
THIS Devon Plate cup meeting had been delayed several times because of the weather and the game-hungry Sharks shot out of the traps.
The Stonehouse pack pressured Plymstock from the first kick and the ball was quickly fed left for wing Harry Bishop to score in the corner.
From the restart, it was the same tale: pressure from the forwards, good passing from the backs and, this time, centre Lewis Andrews scoring under the posts. Toby Moss converted.
However, Oaks are made of sturdy stuff.
Resolute defence and some excellent tackling kept the Sharks at bay then until the very last seconds of the half, number eight Tom Hinds emerging from under a pile of bodies to claim a try for the forwards.
Plymstock started the second half brightly but, as they attempted to chase the game, Sharks ruthlessly capitalised on mistakes.
A great run by full-back Sean Brown was halted with an excellent covering tackle, but fly-half Tommy Pullinger was in the right place to take the ball on and score under the posts.
Oaks refused to wilt and spent some time camped in the Stonehouse half. Unfortunately for them, Sharks broke up their penalty move and Andrews won a kick and chase to score. Moss added the conversion.
The pressure from Stonehouse was then relentless.
The pack won a scrum against the head in Oaks' 22 and Jerome Clench, who had moved to number eight, picked up from the back and thundered over. Moss again added the extras.
A fine run by replacement winger Brandon Wilton then led to a last minute penalty try converted by Andrews.
It was a great team performance by Stonehouse against a Plymstock team who didn't give up or let their chins drop.