Both of the Mayo sides in the top division of junior rugby in the province went down last weekend, with Westport coming up short by three points at home to Ballinasloe and Ballina shipping a 29 point home defeat at the hands of Monivea.
Westport’s narrow loss to the east Galway side has allowed Ballinasloe to jump ahead of them in the table and into third place by a single point after each side played nine games.
The Bulls failed to get going early on and found themselves trailing 11 - 0 at the break in Carrowholly, but they battled back in the second half and a Kevin Corcoran try along with a Séan Tobin penalty brought them to within three points of the east Galway men. Westport will be disappointed with the loss having held the joint league leaders Connemara to a 24-24 draw in the previous round.
Next up for JP Walsh’s side is a meeting with the other side who are currently joint top of the table, Monivea, on the road on Sunday afternoon.
Ballina dropped to second bottom in the table last weekend after they were crushed by the aforementioned Monivea side who ran in five tries in their 39-8 win in Heffernan Park. Monivea ran in two of their tries before the break, while Ballina could only respond from a penalty from Kevin McCarron. It was more of the same from Monivea in the second half as they ran in three more tries, Ballina did cross the whitewash once with McCarron touching down for the homeside. Next up for Ballina is a home game against the rock bottom OLBC who have only a single bonus point to show for their efforts from their seven games so far. Ballina should pick up the win and give them a kick-start they need to start climbing back up the table.
Castlebar put on powerful display
In division 1b Castlebar hit the half century on the road last Sunday when they racked up 50 points against a hapless Corrib side in Headford. Castlebar touched down seven times against the border side, with Matthew Staunton getting over the line twice along with efforts from Martin Moran, David Staunton, Mark Staunton, and Richard Sweeney. That bonus point win puts Castlebar within one point of second placed Loughrea in the table, and this Sunday at 2.30pm the Galway men will come to Cloondeash for what should be a cracking encounter between the sides. Last weekend Loughrea were beaten by table toppers Buccaneers at home and Castlebar will be ready to go with all guns blazing to jump into second place this Sunday.
It was not such a good weekend for the other two Mayo outfits in division 1b, with both Ballinrobe and Ballyhaunis going down on the road. Ballinrobe lost by four points to a Creggs team who moved to within two points of the south Mayo men in the table with the win. Creggs put up all their points in the first half and went in leading 19-3 at the break, Ballinrobe did fight back with two tries in the second half and a conversion but they could not close the gap.
Ballyhaunis will be disappointed to have been turned over by Tuam last weekend, the east Mayo men have now lost three games on the bounce and will want to get out of this rut as soon as possible. They lost out 27-14 with Guy Patterson getting all their scores, from two tries and two conversions, but it was not enough to even get a bonus point. Both teams have a fortnight off to get ready for their next outings.