Dromore were unable to start 2016 with a win as they succumbed to a 31-3 defeat to Portadown at Chambers Park.
Portadown scored five unanswered tries, despite Dromore putting them under pressure early on.
Portadown found Dromore’s high tempo start hard to live with, with Stuart Russell, Rory Pepper and Adam McDonald making strong carries.
Adam McDonald missed an early penalty attempt after a Portadown man was sent to the bin for a professional foul.
Scrum half, Adam McDonald, was lively and found a hole in the Portadown defence to snipe through. Good supporting lines gave Dromore momentum and Ryan Cobb converted the eventual penalty for Dromore’s only points of the match.
After several breaks from Ryan Hughes, Portadown got their hands on the ball and looked dangerous through their left winger.
Portadown opted to keep the ball tight and test the Dromore fringe defence and scrambled their way over the line, the conversion was successful and Dromore were trailing by four points. 7-3.
Ryan Cobb returned Dromore to the Portadown 22 with a break down the left wing and a nice kick, but Portadown won the lineout and cleared.
Dromore were awarded another chance to close the gap to one point with a penalty on the 22 after Portadown were adjudged to have entered the ruck from the side. The penalty was missed, but Dromore were having a decent spell.
Dromore did have opportunities to score tries in the game. After a good lineout, a maul was set but it was held up just over the line. From the eventual scrum, Dromore failed to capitalise on their dominance.
In the closing minutes of the first half, Portadown won the ball in the Dromore 22 after a knock on. Portadown won the initial shove with a penalty as a reward, but Dromore replied to win the penalty and end the half.
A great line from Michael Allen kept the Portadown defence honest at the start of the second half and Dromore continued to have the majority of possession.
However, it was the home side that scored the first points of the half. An incisive break from the Portadown scrum half and several missed tackles from Dromore allowed the home side to extend their lead to 14-3. Dromore will be disappointed to have conceded that try that put the side two scores ahead.
Portadown had their tails up and began to make more breaks. The home side looked to play at a fast pace and got their third try of the afternoon which left Dromore a mountain to climb.
After the quickfire double from Portadown, Dromore found it hard to build any kind of momentum with their hosts dominating the set piece. Portadown got their bonus point try when the ball was thrown wide before the openside flanker picked a nice inside line to cross the whitewash. The conversion was successful to take the score to 26-3 to Portadown.
Dromore tried to finish with a flurry after a break by John Cullen. Scott Nelson was on hand to support the centre and took the ball into the 22. Despite being bundled into touch, Dromore kept contesting and tried to force themselves over the line. Aaron Stewart made a break through the centre but the ball was knocked on in contact.
For the remainder of the match, Dromore struggled to get into the Portadown half, with the home side looking the more likely to add to their score. They did just that when Dromore lost the ball to the Portadown scrum half, who passed to allow his team mate to run in from the 22m line unopposed. The conversion was missed to leave the score 31-3.