Hornets clear at the top

Hornets registered their fourth eight-try game from four starts this season, taking them six points clear at the top of Western Counties North.

HORNETS 51 pts

MATSON 19 pts

HORNETS burst through the 200 point barrier for the season in style with their fourth eight-try game from four starts this season, taking them six points clear at the top of Western Counties North.

The large home crowd did not have to wait too long for the first score. Matson started briskly and had the home side on the back foot for the first five minutes but a break by Bradley and offload to Cornish saw him scorch over for the opening try of the game. Player coach Chase was next to touchdown as the Hornets dominated all areas.

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Middlemiss, at 10, and No 8 Speller then combined to delivere an inch perfect pass for second row Hogarth to canter in unopposed under the posts for the first of his three tries. Jones added the extras along with a penalty two minutes later.

Prop Gould was next over the whitewash with a typical charge, Jones adding the extras, and Hornets had 27 points in the bag and a bonus point in as many minutes.

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A shell-shocked Matson responded and started to take the game to the home side, and they were duly rewarded on the stroke of the half with an unconverted try, making it 27-5 to Hornets at the break.

The restart saw the home side continue to dominate the set pieces, driving Matson back at will in the scrum. With only five minutes of the half gone, Hogarth was found in his favoured wing position and he took a pass from Jones to stroll in at the corner.

Jones missed the kick but was back in action four minutes later as he charged down the wing deciding to take the direct route through Matson’s rookie winger to touch down. He added the extras to bring his tally to 14 for the day, a little short of his 18.5 average for the season so far.

Bradley was the next beneficiary of Jones’ hard running as he popped up on the winger’s shoulder to collect a backhand pass to score out wide. Lloyd-Jones took over the kicking duties to slot the extras with only 18 minutes of the half gone.

The young Matson side stepped up to the plate and again took the game to the home side. Hornets held on, but conceded a well worked try which was converted.

Hornets’ last and Hogarth’s third was the try of the match. Hogarth collected the ball on halfway at some pace, and with support on either shoulder he veered and lurched towards the line. Two outrageous dummies confused the opposition as he clung on to score out wide for a well deserved hat-trick.

Matson had the last say however. From the restart Hornets failed to clear their lines and the visitors were rewarded with a converted try.

This weekend Hornets travel up the motorway to fourth placed North Bristol.

* Hornets 2nd XV made the short trip to play Weston’s third team but the game was marred by an horrific early injury to Chris Disney.

An ambulance was called and a reshuffle in the pack saw Milsom join the field. Following some good forward play and some strong runs from Hallett and Cheesborough, the former went over for his first try of the season.

With the game becoming more of an arm wrestling match within the forwards, and a lot of argy bargy, there was little flowing rugby played.

After some good handling among the backs Partridge crossed the line before Weston responded with a converted try. Following an infringment in the Hornets’ 22, Weston landed a kick to draw the scores level.

After several phases of play Sheridan scored a try under the posts, which he converted himself. He then added another three points with a penalty to secure a hard-fought 20-10 victory. On Saturday, Hornets welcome Oldfield Old Boys 2nds to The Nest.

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