Friday Night Blues: No Cup Run for the Hills

Hillhead/Jordanhill 17 pts Ardrossan Accies 24 pts

On a wonderful night for running rugby and on a beautifully presented Hughenden playing surface, the “Hills” just fell short in their attempts to advance into round 2 of the National BT Cup competition. There was no lack of effort or endeavour from both sides, but play was scrappy with few attempts to build on phased possession and recycling. Rory Harte made most of the running for “Hills” spurred on by a dynamic performance from debutant Conor Duignan at scrum half. Harte’s eye for a half chance served him well after some eighteen minutes when he ran a fine line off quick ball to cut through the visitor’s defence to score beneath the posts and convert his own try. But that stung Ardrossan into action and they quickly levelled with “Hills” defence on the flanks found wanting. The pivotal moment in the game came in the twenty eight minute when the visitors had a man sent to the sin bin for an offence which most of the cognoscenti in the crowd felt merited a red card. The perceived wisdom in rugby says that as soon as a team loses a player then they can expect to concede a minimum of seven points. The reverse was true, however, at Hughenden when the short handed visitors took control and profited from some Hills sloppiness at a line out to race the length of the field and score. Hills Rory Harte kicked a penalty towards the close of the first half to remove some of his team’s blushes and take the score to twelve points to ten for Ardrossan.

Stung by the half time talk from their coaches, “Hills” raised their game considerably in the second period , principally through the efforts of their centres, Scott Busby and James Reekie who took the game to the opposition by breaking in the midfield. But despite some good recycling, the attacks tended to fizzle cut through some poor decision making and basic handing errors. “Hills” added to their scoring through the terrier like instincts of scrum half Duignan and the ball carrying power of Owen Gemmell who cut through the visitors’ defence impressively to score with Harte adding the conversion. But despite all the tireless work of Alex Cameron about the field and the attacking instincts of Scott Whiteford, “Hills” were unable to add to the score and Ardrossan broke away again twice to make sure of their victory below the Hughenden lights which seemed to be burning long after the end of what would have been considered regulation time.

The defeat signals the end of interest in the BT Cup for season 2016 2017. The “real deal” now commences in the first league match of the season vs Whitecraigs at Hughenden on Saturday the 3rd September with a 15.00 KO. Come along and support the new coaches, Robbie Stewart and Frankin Clark, and the team.

“Hills” 1st XV: Oscar Welsh, Douglas Elder, James Reekie, Scott Busby, Graham Davidson, Rory Harte (C) , Conor Duignan (Andrew Scott jnr) , George Stephenson (Darryl Elvin), Harry Perston, Blair Mackenzie, Chris Tulloch , Alec Cameron (Harry Singh) , Graham Milloy (Don McAdam) , Owen Gemmell, Scott Whiteford.