|Ospreys (12) 19|
|Try: Sutton, Morgan-Williams, Parry The inconvenients: Walch 2|
|Connecticut (14) 22|
|Try: Wootton, Blade, Porch The inconvenients: Cardy 2 Drop goal: Carty|
Connacht celebrated a United Rugby Championship away win against an inexperienced Ospreys side to complete the opening block of Championship games.
The Ospreys took a 12-point lead thanks to tries from Huw Sutton and Reuben Morgan-Williams.
Connacht responded with scores from Adam Wootton, Caolin Blade and John Porch.
Ospreys substitute hooker Sam Parry cut the deficit late but Connacht held on for the win.
Captain Jack Carty pulled the strings for the visitors, adding seven points including a drop-goal as Connacht’s third win lifted them to 12th in the URC table.
The Ospreys have now managed just one win in the first block of seven games with four defeats and two draws as Toby Booth’s side are 13th with only Munster, Scarlets and Zebre below them.
Both teams will now have a four-week break before the league resumes at the end of November.
Second string side
Hooker Scott Baldwin has captained an Ospreys team that has seen 11 changes since the loss to the Dragons with fullback Max Nagy, fly-half Jack Walsh and back-row pair Ethan Roots and Morgan Morris retaining their squares.
The Ospreys were forced to field a second team with Nicky Smith, Gareth Thomas, Tomas Francis, Adam Beard, Alun Wyn Jones, Dan Lydiate, Jac Morgan, Justin Tipuric, Gareth Anscombe, Joe Hawkins, George North, Owen Watkin and Alex Cuthbert. involved in the Wales autumn squad.
Hooker Dewi Lake was also initially called up by Wales head coach Wayne Pivac but is now sidelined after injuring his shoulder at Rodney Parade last weekend.
Rhys Webb, Dan Evans, Will Griffiths, Sam Cross, Bradley Davies, Will Hickey, Harri Morgan, Sam Moore, Mat Protheroe and Stephen Myler were also out through injury.
Connacht showed 10 squad changes which beat the Scarlets 36-14 with Jarrad Butler making his 100th appearance, with Mack Hansen, Finlay Bealham, Dave Heffernan and Cian Prendergast on assignment in Ireland.
The Ospreys got off to a flying start with a first down for the Sutton lock after Walsh picked up a Reuben Morgan-Williams chip and fed Luke Morgan.
The hosts added a second score after a clever interaction between center Keiran Williams and Morgan-Williams who dived.
The Ospreys were in the ascendancy until an unnecessary late tackle from Roots on Connacht lock Gavin Thornbury resulted in the home flanker being shown a yellow card.
The hosts managed to prevent Connacht down to 14 men, but the Irish Province broke the Ospreys line through the Wootton wing after a long pass from Carty who also converted from the sideline.
Flanker Tristan Davies made his Ospreys debut as a temporary blood replacement for Harri Deaves, while Connacht pair Darragh Murray and Adam Byrne also made their first appearances in the Irish province.
Connacht took the lead with fluid movement down the left side with center David Hawkshaw shot down short but scrum-half Blade dove.
Carty converted to give the visitors a 14-12 halftime lead.
Early in the second half, near his own line, Ospreys number eight Morgan Morris offered Connacht a third try for the Porch wing.
It was unfortunate for Morris who once again proved the main ball-carrying option for his team.
In-form Ospreys winger Keelan Giles finally came to life after a calm game with a searing break, but his inside pass to Morgan-Williams went astray.
The home side changed their first line which included a debut for prop Ben Warren and the first appearance of the season for Welsh hooker Parry.
Carty scored a drop-goal to take the advantage of Connacht on two scores.
Parry made an immediate impression with a few turnovers and appeared to dig in for third down with Walsh converted to cut the deficit to three points.
The Ospreys fought back as they sought a winning scoreline but were denied by Connacht as the Irish province sealed victory.
Ospreys: Max Nagy; Luke Morgan, Tiaan Thomas-Wheeler, Keiran Williams, Keelan Giles; Jack Walsh, Ruben Morgan Williams; Rhys Henry, Scott Baldwin (captain), Tom Botha, Rhys Davies, Huw Sutton, Ethan Roots, Harri Deaves, Morgan Morris.
Replacements: Sam Parry, Garyn Phillips, Ben Warren, Jack Regan, Tristan Davies, Matthew Aubrey, Luke Scully, Michael Collins.
Connection: Tiernan O’Halloran; Alex Wootton, Tom Farrell, David Hawkshaw, John Porch; Jack Carty (captain), Colin Blade; Denis Buckley, Dylan Tierney-Martin, Jack Aungier, Oisín Dowling, Gavin Thornbury, Shamus Hurley-Langton, Conor Oliver, Jarrad Butler.
Replacements: Grant Stewart, Jordan Duggan, Sam Illo, Darragh Murray, Paul Boyle, Kieran Marmion, Tom Daly, Adam Byrne.
Arbitrator: Sam Grove-White (SRU)
Assistant referees: Adam Jones and Mark Butcher (WRU)
TMO: Andrew McMenemy (SRU)
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