Hornets lose out in top of the table clash

Hornets lose a close game against Barton Hill in a top of the table clash.

Barton Hill 18 pts

Hornets 11 pts

THIS top of the table clash saw the tightest defence in Barton Hill, against the top points scorers in Hornets.

On the day, the Barton Hill defence won out. It was the first time this season that the Hornets’ front five had a real test as the home side matched them for size and cunning.

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The home side took the lead after four minutes when their veteran No 8 offloaded to their big second row who crashed over. Hornets were under the cosh for the opening period and the penalty count was growing.

Collings was presented with a yellow card and Barton Hill duly slotted the points. To Hornets’ credit they upped their game and a series of raids into the Barton Hill 22 gave Jones the chance to slot over a penalty.

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Hornets had to rearrange the back division as Vinnicombe received a cut ear from a wayward boot that needed hospital attention; he was replaced by Lloyd-Jones. The half came to a close with Hornets on the attack. A penalty in front of the posts gave Jones the chance to close the gap to seven.

The second half got underway with the strong wind in Hornets’ favour. Grimes replaced Chenoweth and the visitors started to make inroads. Hogarth’s take at the line-out saw the drive get moving for Chase to touch down.

Now with only a two point gap and the home pack starting to tire, Hornets kept the pressure on. Collings was adjudged not to have grounded the ball following a good drive by the forwards.

However, more disruption followed when Hornets lost wing Jones. Flanker Cheeseborough was moved to the wing as Nettleton came into the back row.

As the game came to a close, an off-the-ball incident saw two Hornets’ players involved out wide this left a gap for the Barton Hill centre to score.

With five minutes remaining, Hornets threw everything at the Barton Hill defence they went close on three occasions. The final one saw Gadd adjudged out in the corner by the referee as he blew for the end off the match giving Barton Hill an 18-11 victory.

Hornets earned a bonus point to keep them well in the title hunt with a game in hand on the only teams to beat them this year, joint league leaders Barton Hill and North Bristol, both of whom have to come to the Nest in the new year.

Captain Kent will need to rally the troops for next week’s visit from Gloucester side Berry Hill, kick off will be 2.30pm.

Hornets 2nd XV 52 pts

Old Culverhaysians 10 pts

THE seconds were looking to maintain their undefeated run and got off to a good start with strong running by forwards Nash and Hedges. A good pick-up from No 8 Hallett saw him crash through to score under the posts, with the extras added by Ashfield.

Following good work at the breakdown by Cox and Snelling, Mounsden went blind and set up Lawrence to cross out wide. Basic errors gave Old Culverhaysians the chance to score.

Good work by the backs gave Owens the chance to touch down under the posts, converted by Ashfield. Soon after, Mounsden crossed for his second try, converted by Ashfield.

After the break, the visitors were first to score. Hornets hit back with a try for Kingman and another for Lawrence, the latter converted by Owens.

Hornets were soon back on the attack and Keating crossed for his first try of the season, Ashfield adding the extras. The final try was scored by Richardson, converted by Ashfield.

Ashley Down 2nd XV 26

Hornets 3rd XV 34

THE thirds travelled to Ashley Down in a hastily-arranged friendly, registering six tries to record their fifth successive victory.

After Ashton missed a penalty, Rob Owen’s drop out landed in the hands of Greg White, who raced 60 metres to open the scoring.

Shortly afterwards, Hornets doubled their lead as a good run from Jack Russ allowed Dave Mitchell to crash over. The score was cancelled out by a converted try from the home side.

With five minutes remaining in the half, Sam Holland made an excellent break and the ball was recycled for Mitchell to go over in the corner. However, a mistake from Hornets allowed the home side to cross for a converted try close to half-time, leaving Hornets with a slender 15-14 lead.

After the break, the home side added a third converted try as they took a six point lead. Good hands from Carter and Dorrington matched by a superb run from Steffan Russ, saw the senior Russ brother under the posts. The conversion from Carter restored Hornets lead.

The lead was stretched further when Jason Cunningham side-stepped his way over the line for an unconverted try. Ashton hit back to score a fourth try, but the visitors scored again through White, converted by Carter.

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