Cooke edged out by Ballyclare in hard fought game at ShawsBridge.
Ballyclare started strongly and exerted considerable pressure on the Cooke defence which stood firm. Cooke opened the scoring after 15 minutes, slightly against the run of play ,with a well worked counter attack by the backs resulting in a try for Alec Gourley.
Five minutes later a similar counter attack with some good handling by the backs gave Alec Gourley his second try which was converted by his brother Alan. The game continued at a fast pace with penalty opportunities missed by both teams, though no further scoring before half-time.
Ballyclare having been stung by conceeding 2 tries put Cooke under pressure early in the 2nd half. After 5 minutes they scored a push over try which was converted. This was followed shortly afterwards by a penalty.
Unfortunately for Cooke Johnny Walshe had to leave the field of play with an ankle injury and his presence was missed. Fifteen minutes into the 2nd half Ballyclare scored from a cross field kick which due to the unpredictability of a rugby ball bounce went over the head of a Cooke defender into the arms of a Ballyclare player who scored under the posts.
Cooke came more into the game and pressed hard with some good attacking moves. However due to a couple of forward passes and good defence by Ballyclare they were unable to convert the pressure into points and the match finished 17-12 in favour of Ballyclare.