Hornets keep promotion charge on track
- Credit: Archant
Hornets’ promotion challenge remains on track after a 19-6 victory over Bridgwater.
HORNETS 19 pts
BRIDGWATER 6 pts
HORNETS visited local rivals Bridgwater and consolidated their second spot in the league, while nearest rivals St Austell and Cleve shared the spoils in a drawn match.
Both packs of forwards spent the first 15 minutes sizing each other up and both scrums and line-outs were evenly matched. Eventually Hornets were able to win clean ball from a scrum and the ball was moved through hands to Cornish, who was able to break the opposition line. Once in space, he galloped clear for the opening try. Jones added the conversion for a 7-0 lead.
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Bridgwater were immediately back on the attack, but despite a series of penalties, the Hornets’ defence held firm and the home side was unable to score, but Disney was caught offside at a ruck and was sent to the sin bin.
Still Bridgwater pressurised, but Hornets gained a penalty turnover and Letherby cleared to touch. From the resulting line-out, Jones made an impressive break and surged over halfway.
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He offloaded to Carter who made good ground of his own for the first of several breaks from the impressive youngster. Carter was stopped, but Hornets were awarded a penalty, but possession was lost.
The game threatened to boil over when a moment of brotherly love saw the Francis brothers come to blows at a breakdown. Both players were obviously relishing the opportunity to play against each other and there was certainly no holding back, despite having to head off after the match for a family night out.
Hornets were able to withstand all Bridgwater could throw at them and extended their lead on 30 minutes. The forwards provided a solid platform and made good ground through a maul before releasing the backs.
Jack Gadd crashed the ball up and when recycled Letherby kicked through for Jones to dive on the ball just before it rolled dead. An impressive team try which extended Hornets lead to 12-0.
With half-time looming, there was just time for Bridgwater to pull the score back to 12-3 before the break.
The second half saw Hornets gain the upper hand. Parker was impressive off the back of the scrum and Carter was causing the Bridgwater defence all sorts of problems with his strong running.
When captain Kent was forced to leave the field through injury, Hornets were forced to re-organise their pack. Francis moved to hooker and Dan Ogden was introduced from the bench.
The 18-year-old back rower who has impressed for the Colts over the past two seasons, went on to make an impressive debut.
Hornets’ third try came from Parker who was becoming increasingly dominant in the loose. He surged his way over showing impressive strength. Jones added the conversion for a 19-3 lead.
Despite some further breaks from Carter and a chance for Cornish, who dropped the ball at the crucial time, the only further score was a further penalty for Bridgwater to give a final score of 19-6.
The result maintains their push for the top and going into Saturday’s crucial game with promotion rivals Camborne, they find themselves a point off the top of the table with two games in hand over the leaders.