Match Report: Women v Cooke
Rock won Saturday's encounter in trying conditions in Stradbrook. The rain that passed earlier in the day left a slick surface and slippery ball for both sides. Rocks indiscipline led to the first score of the game with the Cooke 10 slotting a penalty after 15 minutes of play. After an initial great break from Natasja Behan led to Cooke being camped inside their own 22, Hannah O'Connor being able to level the scores on 3-3 after a high tackle by Cooke. Rock hit back again with a well worked team try. Ali Coleman using sleek footwork to dot down under the posts. With O'Connor slotting the conversion. 10-3 10 mins before half time, Cooke executed a good line out and peeled away from a rolling maul to dot down. Conversion missed. 10- 8. Rock had the better of the opportunities before half time but couldn't capitalise. A mixture of poor handling in the conditions and poor decision making.
Rock kicked the second half off with great intent. Natasja Behan catching the Cooke defence cold on a switched kick off. Rock pushes hard and spent long periods in the Cooke half and 22 but Cooke were equal to it, defending well. Plenty of 2nd half scrums and a couple of injuries to both sides stifled the fluidity of play in the second half. 25 mins into the 2nd half Rock finally capitalised on some great pressure applied by the pack in the red zone - which Niamh Griffin eventually released to Jackie Shiels who dotted down. O'Connor with the extras. 17-8 to Rock. Rock applied more pressure in the closing phases and went close at times. But Cooke looked dangerous on the counter throughout. Rocks defence stood solid and the score finished 17-8 to Rock.