Hornets maintain their lead at the top

PUBLISHED: 09:33 21 January 2011

Rugby Hornetsv Avon

Rugby Hornetsv Avon

Archant

HORNETS needed a much improved performance this week to overcome an in-form Avon side.

HORNETS needed a much improved performance this week to overcome an in-form Avon side.

They were then punished for early errors when Avon opened the scoring through their winger, but the conversion was missed. It wasn’t until 22 minutes in, that Hornets woke the scorers, via a Paul Sheppard penalty.

The attacking play had now gained a little more edge and a foray into the visitors’ 22, Hornets piled on the pressure and following good hands in the backs, Tom Bradley touched down.

Avon hit back with a penalty which they kicked to bring the scores level just before half-time.

After the break, there was 20 minutes of play that would have blown away any side. The spectators only had to wait four minutes before Bradley crossed for his second, following a back row move that saw Chris Disney break, pass to Bradley who completed a one-two with Stu Vinnicombe to beat the full-back before scoring. Sheppard was successful with the extras.

Next on the score sheet was player/coach Phil Hogarth, with Hornets continuing to attack they found themselves camped on the Avon line before scrum-half Sean Disney popped a short pass to Hogarth, who crossed out wide for his ninth try of the season.

From the kick-off, Hogarth caught cleanly and popped the ball to Chris Disney, who flattened a couple of defenders before passing to Greg Speller about 40 yards from home.

The No 8 then showed great pace to beat the winger and full-back to score the bonus point try. Sheppard converted and Hornets led 27-8.

Three minutes later, Adam Vaughan crossed to score what is undoubtedly the try of the season. Awarded a penalty in their own 22, Disney made a break in the middle of the park to get behind the visitors defence.

From here, forwards and backs interlinked, before Vaughan took the final pass to score the try. The conversion was missed, but Hornets had now shown what they can do and how quickly a game can be won.

Avon didn’t give up though and credit to them as they came back and from the kick-off got themselves into a position where their fly-half could kick a drop goal. They then won a line-out and spun it wide for their winger to score a converted try.

Chris Francis was then driven over the line by the pack to score Hornets sixth and seal the game.

Although Avon did manage a further score in the dying minutes, bringing the final score to 37-25, Hornets kept a 13 point lead in the league.

On Saturday, Hornets travel to second placed Chard for what will undoubtedly be the toughest test of the season. Kick-off is at 2.30pm and support will be much appreciated.

Avonmouth RFC III 7 pts

Hornets RFC III 43 pts

Hornets Thirds original fixture was to play host to Minehead, but unfortunately they could not raise a side, therefore Hornets quickly obtained a game at Avonmouth.

From the start, Hornets showed the same grit and determination as last week, with forwards Dave Geddes, Dave Jones and Sam Baker carrying the ball well, dominating the line-outs, rucks and mauls.

Hornets scored their first try through full-back Connor Hull. Further tries came from winger Rob Owen, centres Steve Edwards and Joe Beaney and the final score of the half was by flanker Sean Steadman. Owen kicked three conversions to finish the first half 31-0 up.

After the break, Owen went over for his second of the game, which he also converted. After a few substitutions 
for Hornets, Avonmouth scored a consolation try, but Hornets were rewarded with the final try of the game when the ball was moved wide through the backs, where Dominic McCabe off loaded to Hull to score.

Man of the match was awarded to Sam Baker.

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