Last Sunday saw the Mackie Minis P4 squad take two teams to the nearby Aberdeen Grammar mini rugby tournament and come away with a very good third place – and they were unlucky not to do even better.
They were split into the Reds and Blacks as is the norm, and both teams competed very well throughout the pool stages.
The Reds, who had more games to play, fought hard and never gave in but unfortunately didn’t make it out of the pool section.
The Blacks, after a slow start and a defeat to Deeside, won their other pool games and ended up top of their pool to go through to the semis and play the hosts, Grammar.
The Grammar game was always going to be close and fierce and this it certainly was with play swinging both ways with fantastic performances by both clubs.
With Grammar leading by a single try, Mackie had two appeals for tries refused by an unfortunately unsighted referee.
Shortly afterwards, full-time was blown, and a gallant but defeated Mackie Blacks team was consigned to the third and fourth place play off.
In that play-off, they were to come up against Deeside who had beaten them in their first game.
Full of passion and energy and a desire to retrieve something for their efforts, the Blacks tore into Deeside with renewed vigour, and the result was never in doubt as Mackie ran out resounding victors and claimed the third place and the bronze medals that went with it.
A great day out all round, thanks go to Grammar for organising such a good event and to the watching supporters for proving such vocal support for the children.
The Grammar tournament was another good day at the office for the Mackie P5s, where a different team to the week before at Stirling performed really well and demonstrated the depth of talent in the squad.
First up was Aberdeen Wanderers, but it very soon became apparent that Mackie were too strong for them and ran out as convincing winners, eight tries to nil.
A tougher game then followed against Grammar with the boys going 2 – 1 ahead only to be pegged back to a draw in the final seconds.
Two further entertaining close games followed against Dundee and Deeside, with some really good running rugby being played by all three teams. However, Mackie came through as narrow winners in both matches.
So into the semi-final they went, against Stirling County who had beaten them in the final the week before at their home tournament.
Revenge was sweet though, and the P5s won by a last minute try to make the final.
After an extended break, the boys faced Grammar and started well, going ahead but the lead changed hands a couple of times before Grammar came through stronger to go to the final whistle four tries to two ahead.
Squad: Kieran Harrison, Calum Harrison, Liam Peddie, Jacob Burgoyne, Rikki Gilchrist, Zak Morrison, Iain Burt, Nathan MacPherson, Drew Howie, Finlay Taylor, Dylan Elliot
This weekend at the Aberdeen Grammar tournament, there were nine P6 teams split into two pools.
In Mackie’s pool, the first game was against the hosts, Aberdeen Grammar. Mackie attacked from the start with the majority of the game played in Grammars’ half. Although they had two tries disallowed, the Mackie team kept the pressure on and Owen scored from a penalty set piece.
As the game drew to a close, the team worked well together from the scrum, and scored a second try which marked the end of the game; 2-0 to Mackie.
The second pool game was against Wanderers and saw Mackie defending well on their try line and managing two tries from their well-practised set pieces; just before the end Joesph ducked and dived through their defence to score a third and final try - 3-0 to Mackie.
The final pool game against Dundee saw Mackie win 6-0.
With three wins ,Mackie were top of their pool and played Stirling County who were runners up in the other pool in the semi final. Both teams came out attacking looking for a place in the final; Mackie started with a try from Dean; then the team showed good team work driving the ball forward for James to score; this was followed quickly by a try from Luke; 3-0 to Mackie.
Mackie had yet to concede a try and were in the final against their oft-time rivals Deeside.
Mackie were first on the scoreboard with a try from James followed quickly by another try only to have it disallowed due to a forward pass.
At half time the score was still 1-0 to Mackie. The second half saw another try to Mackie from James after some good rucking and teamwork only to see Deeside score quickly off the re start. Mackie came back and after continued pressure Luke scored the third try making the final score 3-1.
This was an excellent display by the Mackie team who showed great teamwork and only conceded one try in the whole tournament. The Mackie squad was: Calum, Cameron, Conrad, Dean, Hudson, Jack, James, Joseph, Luke, Mathew, Owen and Tom.
Mackie P7s were drawn in a group section with Stirling for the second week running.
Yet again the game proved to be an evenly-balanced and entertaining affair with neither side able to breakdown the opposition.
Mackie were close on a couple occasions, but basic ball handling errors kept them from gaining the upper hand. The game finally finished scoreless.
Next up were the Harlequins, and Mackie were quickly into their stride, scoring an early try.
Mackie proved to be dominant throughout and were 4-0 comfortable winners.
Final game of the group section proved to be a bit harder than expected, with Mackie eventually securing a 3-0 win against a stubborn Ellon team.
The semi-final saw Mackie encounter Dundee Eagles. The game was well controlled by Mackie from the onset with some delightful attacking play and determined tackling throughout. Mackie eventually progressed to the final by scoring two tries without reply.
The final saw Mackie go head-to-head against their old adversaries, Aberdeen Grammar.
Mackie had beaten Grammar rather comfortably when they last played together, but this encounter may prove to be one of the performances of the season for the P7s, as Grammar came out of starting blocks determined to make amends.
Early exchanges were fierce as both sides battled hard to gain the upper edge. Mackie eventually broke the deadlock in the first half and then began to take control as the game worked its way towards the closing stages. It was Grammar, however, that managed to conjure up some magic out of nowhere with a try in the final minute that took the game into extra time with a ‘Golden Try’ to decide the winners.
After a rallying team talk, Mackie re-started and immediately had Grammar on the backfoot determined to finish the job off. Some dogged defending prevented Mackie getting that vital score.
Grammar eventually buckled as Mackie ran in a try at the corner, much to the jubilation of players and travelling fans.