Resurgent Hornets have too much for Coney Hill rivals to claim a convincing success
PUBLISHED: 17:00 30 January 2019
Hornets made it three wins from four in South West One with a convincing 40-13 success over bottom club Coney Hill.
The hosts began brightly, with Dexeter Nettleton charging down an attempted clearance and Ross Cheeseborough stealing lineout ball to launch a backs move.
Quentin Qurel, on his first start, juggled the ball as he went through a gap and fed Ozzy James to break on the wing.
The ball was then recycled and moved the other way for Danny Bailey to carve through the Hill defence and touch down.
Jordan Humphris added the conversion, but the visitors hit back with a penalty, before Querl showed a turn of pace to sprint in for a second Hornets try.
The home scrum came under pressure as Hill replied with a try of their own to make it 12-8 as the two sides showed contrasting styles.
Hornets were looking to keep the ball alive and move it quickly, while their rivals were happy to slow things down at close quarters when given a chance.
The hosts scored again when Bailey broke the defence and set James free to sprint in at the corner, with Humphris adding another conversion.
But Coney Hill would not lie down easily and answered soon after with an unconverted try to pull to within six points.
Hornets claimed a bonus-point try just before half time when Bailey broke the defensive line and offloaded to Joe Gadd, who cruised over and saw Humphris convert for a 26-13 half-time lead.
Heavy rain made for difficult conditions in the third quarter of the match, with both sides battling for midfield supremacy.
But Hornets extended their lead when Hill went down to 14 men for the second time in the game as Bailey Jackson intercepted and crashed over to score a try, converted by Humphris.
And the gap grew further with Hornets in the ascendancy as their scrum began to work well and set a platform for Jacque Conway to dart over.
A fifth Humphris conversion completed the scoring, as Taddy Walters-Dewhirst replaced the impressive Philip Hobbs in the front row alongside hooker and fellow debutant Mikey Brooks.
The bonus-point win lifts Hornets to seventh ahead of a break from league rugby, as they travel to North Petherton for a Somerset Cup semi-final, aiming to retain the trophy.