Curtain comes down on Hornets’ league season

PUBLISHED: 09:29 27 April 2018 | UPDATED: 09:29 27 April 2018

Hornets v Cleve.

Hornets v Cleve.

Archant

Hornets finished their South West Premier League season with a high-scoring draw against Cleve.

On a blisteringly hot day at the Nest, Hornets welcomed Cleve in the last South West Premier League match of the season and it turned out to be an entertaining game as the game ended in a 52-point each draw.

After excellent attacking play by Denton and Parker, Disney took a quick tap penalty for Harris to carry, who then returned the ball for Disney to score, converted by Humphris.

Cleve had Hornets pinned in their own 22 when Dempsey spotted a gap and ghosted through. He was pulled down in Cleve’s half and a series of quick rucks and Francis was put through the hole to score an excellent try, converted by Humphris.

Cleve reacted well and forced a try of their own.Hornets hit back again and Parker broke from the scrum and linked up with the outstanding Denton, who barged over, again converted by Humphris.

Another scrum just inside Cleve’s half and a well rehearsed backs move put Bailey through and he drew the full-back and delivered the ball to Dempsey who gratefully put the ball down over the line, converted by Humphris and Hornets had a bonus point and a lead of 28-5. A lack of concentration by Hornets allowed Cleve to score straight from the restart.

Hornets again attacked, but with Cleve flirting with the offside line managed an interception on their own 22 to score under the posts, and then right on half-time got another to finish the half at 28-26.

After the break, Cleve scored the next two tries in quick succession to go 40-28 in front. Surging runs by Vivian and Locker, aided by superb line-out throwing in by Aplin and Hornets could see the line again.

When they were stopped just short, Pape spotted the posts were unguarded and reached out to touch down, converted by Humphris.

Cleve made a mistake at the kick-off and Denton carried and a quick set of phases and Carter hit the line perfectly to go through. He linked up with Olly James who returned the ball back to Carter for the full-back to go over in the corner and now the game was tied at 40-all.

Denton collected the restart and set off breaking numerous tackles and again Hornets were cruising, Bailey came off his wing to find Francis who carried the ball to the corner flag and touched down.

Hornets again got deep into foreign territory and Disney found Humphris who touched down for his first senior try. He then turned around and slotted the conversion to take his total points tally for the day to 17.

Cleve attacked again and Carter was asked to take an early shower. Cleve were also benefitting from uncontested scrums due to their front row injuries.

They had a good platform, and managed to get two more tries, but unfortunately for them only converted one and so the referee blew for full time and a 52-all draw was a fair result.

Hornets’ run in this division has now come to an end as they look forward to rebuilding next season, but before that have a Somerset Cup final to look forward tomorrow (Fri) at Hutton Moor against Bath University (7.30pm).

This brings the prospect of some silverware to reward this young team for all their efforts this year. Since Christmas, their performances have been outstanding, but alas not quite enough to stay up.

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