Hornets girls give a stunning display to inflict rare defeat on Old Northamptonians
PUBLISHED: 14:00 25 April 2019
Hornets under-18 girls produced a stunning display to claim a 36-12 win over an Old Northamptonians side beaten just once all season.
The home side's smaller pack showed superb work rate and physicality, wearing their rivals down.
The front five of Sophie Everett, Kerri Townsend, Natasha Foley, Tianna Franks and Ellie Maher combined well in the scrum and lineout, tackling well and clearing out rucks with ferocity.
The back row of Lois Bird, Sophie Adams and Millie Mann put in their best performance of the season as Hornets began well and dominated possession for long periods.
Early pressure on the ON line led to centre Pip Hendy cutting a beautiful line off fly-half Harrie Payne for the first try, converted by Amy Coles.
But Coles limped off soon after, hurt in a collapsed maul, and Georgia Seviour returned from a knee injury that had kept her out since January.
Bird was next to touch down, going over from close range, to make it 12-0 as centres Hendy and Cass Escott shone in attack and defence.
Seviour, Lily Jones and Ella Hutchinson looked dangerous with the ball as Dadds and Payne varied play with kicks and passes to keep ON guessing.
And a sweeping backs move saw Hornets extend their lead to 19-0 before the break as Jones put Seviour over for a popular score.
The second half continued in similar vein as Hendy struck again after a trademark burst from midfield, with Townsend adding the conversion.
ON hit back from the restart but the Hornets defence held firm and, after stealing possession, the ball was moved to Adams on the right, who sent Hutchinson over for a fifth try.
The visitors dug deep to score two tries, one of which was converted, to make it 29-12 after Bird had been sent to the sin bin and Hendy was being patched up on the touchline.
But Hornets did not panic and Bird latched on to a pass in her own half and showed electric pace to claim a breathtaking try, converted to complete the scoring.
And in an excellent team display, centres Escott and Hendy shared the player of the match honours for their pace, lines of running, passing and willingness to defend.