Larne slipped down to fourth in Qualifying 2 after they were agonisingly edged out 13-12 by Enniskillen at a rain-soaked Glynn.
Larne battled hard from the outset in Saturday’s match and played all the rugby in the first 20 minutes, but strong defending from the visitors kept them at bay. The only thing they had to show for their endeavour was Phil Andrews penalty.
The visitors’ response came when an over-throw at a line-out fell kindly into the hands of the Enniskillen back row who broke through two soft tackles in the slippy conditions. Larne scrambled back but they could not regain their defensive structure in time, gifting a simple try against the run of play.
As Larne lost a bit of momentum, they slowly allowed Enniskillen to start dominating play and two converted penalties for the visitors gave them a healthy 3-13 half-time advantage.
As the clock ran down in the second half, Larne started to opt for the penalties and scraped their way back into contention, bringing the scores to 12-13 with 10 minutes still to play.
This weekend Larne travel to Coleraine where they will be hoping to cause an upset against the title contenders.
In Qualifying 3 there was a comprehensive defeat for Mallusk-based Ophir who went down 54-0 at the hands of second-placed UU Coleraine. Ophir’s next league match is away to Strabane on January 30.