Marr U18s reach Plate final at Murrayfield
By Duncan Beckwith
Hard fought win over Trinity secures final against Lomond/Helensburgh
Marr U18s travelled to Edinburgh to face a strong Trinity Academy knowing that a win would secure a place in the Scottish Schools Plate final. On a cold, but sunny day and with a pitch in excellent order Trinity opted to play with the wind and the slope. However it was Marr who started the game with a greater intensity than has been seen of late and dominated territory and possession. Despite this they failed to score, due to some resolute Trinity defence and Marr players failing to keep control the ball.
Against the run of play Trinity opened the scoring with their first foray into the Marr 22. However the conversion was missed giving Trinity a 5-0 lead.
Straight from the restart Jack Bray secured turnover ball and the remainder of the half belonged to Marr. Despite Rollo Press being yellow carded for a tip tackle Marr continued to have the majority of the play with Keir Gaw in particular carrying the ball well.
Half time was reached with no further score and Marr turned round with the slope advantage. Marr's lineout which had mis-functioned in the first half started to operate more efficiently and from a driving maul gained fifteen metre before being stopped illegally and the Trinity miscreant received a ten minute rest. Marr continued to exert pressure and eventually the strong Trinity defence was broken when Press surged through from 40 metres to score under the posts to make the conversion a formality for Paterson and give Marr the lead 7-5.
Despite presssing the Trinity line Marr were unable to score again and with only minutes to go Trinity broke from their own half with their winger making a powerful run only for Sandy Morgan to save the day with a brilliant cover tackle. Trinity recycled the ball but knocked it on with the try line beckoning. Marr were then able to clear their lines and the whistle blew for full time. Commiserations to Trinity who put in a sterling performance but came up against a great defensive display by Marr.
Marr now face Lomond/ Helensburgh in the Plate final at Murrayfield next Wednesday. Attention now turns to the U16s who travel to Lasswade tomorrow to play in their Shield semi final and the possibility of two Marr teams appearing in the school finals together for the first time.