PRO14 RUGBY: (Match Report) – GLASGOW 35-22 CONNACHT 

Galway Daily sport Four Connacht players named for Ireland ‘A’ Match Day Squad

Connacht rallied in the second half but paid the price for a poor opening 40 minutes that saw them fall to another defeat in their penultimate Guinness PRO14 game. 

After battling for a Champions Cup spot, five consecutive defeats have seen Kieran Keane’s men limp towards the finish as Glasgow confirmed their position as Conference A winners.

Finlay Bealham gave Connacht the perfect start inside two minutes when he got in for a try but by the fourth minute, their lead was gone.

Johnny Gray and DTH Van Der Merwe did the work that allowed Stuart Hogg in for Glasgow’s first before Peter Horne converted making it 7-5 in Glasgow’s favour.

Three further penalties from the Glasgow out half put 11 points between the teams before Jack Carty got his first on 25 minutes leaving it 16-8.

However, Glasgow removed any doubts about the result when they broke the tackle oon 27 minutes before Alex Dunbar got in for the second try.

And on the stroke of half-time, referee Frank Murphy, a former Connacht player, gave Fraser Brown the touchdown.  Horne converted both times and Glasgow led 30-8 at half-time.

A mauling looked Connacht’s way and it didn’t get any better three minutes after the restart.  Henry Pyrgos was the finisher after Dunbar and Matt Fagerson set him up.  Horne’s completely miskicked the conversion but the bonus point was secured at 35-8.

Glasgow eased up as Connacht tried to make inroads and put some respectability on the scoreboard.  They were held up for a driving maul 10 minutes later but eventually a second try came Connacht’s way.

Stacey Ili, who replaced the injured Matt Healy before half-time, set up Caolin Blade who got over the line.  Carty added the two points and the deficit was 20.

But in the final five minutes after Rob Harley became Glasgow’s second yellow card (Alex Allan was removed for 10 minutes earlier), further pressure from the visitors earned a penalty try leaving them one score short of two bonus points.

But despite their valiant efforts to reduce arrears in the second half, the damage was done and Connacht will aim to beat Leinster in two weeks’ time to finish their disappointing campaign on a positive note.

Glasgow Warriors: Stuart Hogg (5 – try); Tommy Seymour, Alex Dunbar (5 – try), Sam Johnson, DTH Van der Merwe; Pete Horne (15 – three penalties, three conversions), Henry Pygros (5 – try); Alex Allan, Fraser Brown (5 – try), Zander Fagerson; Scott Cummings, Jonny Gray; Rob Harley, Callum Gibbins, Matt Fagerson.

Connacht: Darragh Leader; Niyi Adeolokun, Bundee Aki, Peter Robb, Matt Healy; Jack Carty (5 – penalty, conversion), Kieran Marmion; Denis Buckley, Tom McCartney, Finlay Bealham (5 – try); Ultan Dillane, Quinn Roux; Eoghan Masterson, Jarrad Butler, Eoin McKeon.  Other Scorers: Caolin Blade (5 – try), PENALTY TRY.

Referee: Frank Murphy