Left wing Zach Harrison was the hat-trick king as St Michael’s made their way to the Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools Junior Cup quarter-final at Donnybrook on Tuesday.

The impatience of St Michael’s combined with last ditch defence prevented centre Christopher Cosgrave, lock Jonathan Fish and full-back Mark O’Brien from making good on the three times they threatened an early try.  
St Gerard’ couldn’t continue to soak up the pressure, despite the bravery of flanker Oliver Soper and captain Charles Byrne and their fast-up backline.
Although the Bray school was playing from inside their 22, they showed calm and composure to move out of the danger zone.
But, they had to be careful and a loose ball was taken to the house by Cosgrave when skimming along the touchline and cutting back inside for a classic try which the centre also converted in the 11th minute.
A lack of communication from the restart meant St Gerard’s had dibs on a lineout. Flanker David Carroll trucked it up the middle where he was met and overturned by a choke tackle. 
The second try was almost a carbon copy of the first as a ball out of defence was taken in and quickly moved left for centre Cian McGettigan to make the corner.
Cosgrave kicked the touchline conversion for 14-0 in the 16th minute.
St Gerard’s number eight Byrne was onto a loose lineout in a flash and centre Thomas Cahill-Hannigan never shirked the challenge to carry hard into the guts of the opposition.
The Leinster loop move was used by Ben Watson to create an overlap for wing Johnny Kennedy to test Harrison.
Then, Gerard’s moved into position from a penalty for encroaching at a lineout. Prop Luke Concannon broke free of a maul only to be gang-tackled into touch.       
This was more like it for them.
Once again, however, St Michael’s struck from distance as full-back O’Brien exploited space down the left for a superb individual try.
This was replicated by Harrison when the left wing chipped and chased to collect for the fourth, all in the left corner for 24-0 just before the break.
It was more of the same on resumption as lock Fish latched onto an unclaimed ball and Harrison had the wheels to get around the outside.
The dam had burst. The high-fielding of Cosgrave was the spark for the next one, Harrison haring away for his hat-trick and right wing Andrew Smith soon followed up. 
There was still time for St Gerard’s to engineer a sweet score.
Out-half Watson pierced the first-up defence and executed a difficult pass under pressure for Byrne to finish in style.
Watson converted for 39-7 midway through the half. 
The winners were back for more when the acres of open field allowed Smith to step inside and power through a tackle for his second.
It was at this point St Gerard’s played some of their best rugby when replacement scrum-half Richard Bisgood orchestrated their driving game and Louis Lalor surged down the right.
They weren’t quite finished.
Watson had a pop and the ball was slipped left for Byrne to eventually bag his second from close range. 
At Donnybrook – ST MICHAEL’S COLLEGE 44 (C Cosgrave try, 2 cons; Z Harrison 3 tries; A Smith 2 tries; C McGettigan, M O’Brien try each); ST GERARD’S SCHOOL 12 (C Byrnes 2 tries; B Watson con).
St Michael’s: Mark O’Brien;  Andrew Smith, Christopher Cosgrave, Cian McGettigan, Zach Harrison; Niall Carroll, Robert Gilsenan; Jack Boyle, Lee Barron, Joshua Toland, Jonathan Fish, Luke Dunne, William Hickey, Mark Hernan (capt), Ben Gannon.
Replacements: Conor Frankling for Hernan 35 mins; Oscar Hurley for Frankling 39 mins – temp; Adam Headon for R Gilsenan, Tim Gilsenan for Cosgrave, Oscar Hurley for Fish all 41 mins; Edward Kelly for Harrison 44 mins; Zach Harrison for Smith 46 mins – temp; Benjamin Victory for Barron, Ben Gallagher for Boyle, Hugh McGovern for Toland all 49 mins; Robert Gilsenan for O’Brien 56 mins.
St Gerard’s: Stuart Jackson; Johnny Kennedy, Harry Begley, Thomas Cahill-Hannigan, Oliver Haydock; Ben Watson, Luke O’Reilly; Luke Concannon, Robert Byrne, Brendan Farrell, Dillon Ashmore, Niall Dooley, David Carroll, Oliver Soper, Charles Byrne (capt).
Replacements: Neil Denvir for Ashmore 17 mins; Piers O’Connor for Cahill-Hannigan 29 mins – temp; Louis Lalor for Kennedy 38 mins; Piers O’Connor for Jackson 47 mins; Richard Bisgood for O’Reilly 52 mins; Michael Connolly for Carroll, Ben Hutchinson for Denvir, Jeremy O’Donovan for Begley, Jack Finnegan for Concannon all mins.
Referee: Berney White, Leinster Branch.