Corinthians completed the double against Blackrock College, winning by 29-12 on Saturday afternoon to continue their push for promotion in the Ulster Bank League.
Maintaining their position in second place in division 1B, Corinthians, with a game in hand, are currently six points clear of nearest rivals UL Bohs. Significantly Saturday’s win at Cloonacauneen was the first in which the Galway pacesetters earned a bonus point for four tries - three in the opening half.
The home side grabbed their first try after 10 minutes courtesy of a turnover, and from the resulting scrum, Connacht outhalf Miah Nikora found support from the backrow with lock Eoghan Masterson touching down out wide. Nikora added the extras.
Blackrock did carve opportunities, but a missed kick at goal and a knock-on kept them scoreless as the home side started to assert themselves. Forcing penalties from which they were able to capitalise, wing David Panter set up fullback Conor Murphy for the second try, which again Nikora converted for a 10-0 lead.
Five minutes before the break Rock's outhalf Dave Godfrey received a yellow card, allowing the home side to stretch their lead when substitute Sean O'Hagan slipped in for the third try, while Nikora added a penalty for a comfortable 22-0 half-time lead.
Corinthians went all out for the fourth try and the bonus point after the break, which they achieved in the 55th minute when centre James Buckley and scrumhalf Marcus Walsh set up flanker John Burns to score. Again Nikora was spot on with the convert.
With the five points in the bag, the home side took the foot of the pedal. Blackrock got on the scoreboard in the 60th minute with a converted Peter McCague try, while winger Mark Scott-Wilson finished off for a second try before the final whistle.
Corinthian's next outing is at home to Ulster side Dungannon on Saturday March 1.
Corinthians: C Murphy, B Dixon, J Buckley, F Gormley (cpt), D Panter, M Nikora, M Walsh, M Byrne, J Merrigan, F Bealham, G Warde, C Raftery, D Phelan, J Burns, E Masterson, Subs, P O’Toole, T Toolan, A Broderick, M Murphy, S O'Hagan.