Friday, February 1, 2013
A PENALTY two minutes from time sent Barnstaple sliding to an 18-16 defeat against Brixham.
It was Barum’s third defeat on the trot in National Three South West and leaves them needing a pick-me-up when they return to the fray in two weeks time with a trip to Chippenham.
Barnstaple, unimpressive in the first half, got their act together after a fashion in the second to creep into a 16-15 lead in the 73rd minute.
Just when it seemed the home side had done enough, referee Carl Bennett pinged them at a breakdown in Ben Lovell’s range and over went the kick.
The Barum bench felt the decision against them for not rolling away from a tackle was harsh and director of rugby Kevin Squire said he was ‘livid’ about it afterwards.
“Brixham must have been smiling all the way home on the coach as they got out of jail,” said Squire.
“They might have had the best of the first half, but we played them off the park in the second.
He added: “That’s four times this season we have lost by a couple of points in similar circumstances, which is getting hard to take.”
Brixham led 7-6 at the break thanks to a try on the run for No.8 Jarryd Harris – converted by Lovell – sandwiched between two penalties from Barum’s Luke Berry.
Lovell and Berry traded a kick each in the second half before Harris claimed his second try, this time a traditional bit of No.8 business from the back of a scrum.
On 72 minutes Barum took the lead with a try by Will Topps, who cruised up the touchline before running round behind the posts to leave Berry a routine conversion.
And that appeared to be that until Lovell put the boot in.
BIDEFORD cut the leeway between themselves and Western Counties and leaders St Austell to four points by beating Ivybridge 22-3.
Ivybridge, strong in defence but limited in attack, had the wind behind them in the first half and changed round 3-0 up thanks to an Adam Bradley penalty.
The second half went Bideford’s way, but it was no cakewalk and they only secured the fourth try and a bonus point in stoppage time.
The driving maul drill was dusted down and deployed to put Simon Bright in for a try.
The ploy worked so well it was used again for flanker Peter Hockridge to claim a five pointer.
Ten minutes later the backline stretched their legs and Sam Olde went over for a corner try that Pat Sanders converted.
In time added on James Buckland hoofed the ball downfield and Adam Crouch came from behind to dribble over soccer-style for the fourth and final try.
Bideford are away to bottom side Honiton this Saturday.
SOUTH Molton thumped Topsham 37-12 to move up into second place in Devon One.
Two early penalties from Steve Ayres settled the nerves before Simon Murch powered over for the opening try, converted by Ayres.
Will Davies grabbed the hosts’ second with Ayres again on the spot with the conversion. The scoring continued when No.8 Dan Smith crashed over from close range.
Matt Monaghan’s effort, which secured the bonus point, was probably the try of the game after a fine backs’ move Monaghan spotted a gap before outpacing three Topsham defenders to the tryline.
The visitors did respond with a penalty try before the break, converted by Tim Taylor, but by now they had left too much to do.
Unsurprisingly the home onslaught slowed in the second period but they did extend their advantage with Smith’s second of the game before Russ Sayer’s consolation score for Topsham.
ILFRACOMBE ran in six tries on their way to a 38-3 win at home against Buckfastleigh.
It was the visitors who took the lead with a penalty but once flanker Tim Bird’s try gave the home side the lead they never looked back.
Tries from Rob Holmes, Jake Thompson and Leo Cooper had the bonus point wrapped up by half time.
Cooper crossed again after the break before veteran prop John Spain – pulled out of retirement to ease a front row crisis – wrapped up the scoring.
Ilfracombe are on the road to Tamar Saracens this Saturday in a rearranged fixture.
TORRINGTON’S relegation worries in Devon One deepened when they were hammered 28-6 at Salcombe, who moved ahead of them in the struggle to stay up.
The two strugglers exchanged penalties in the opening exchanges, Chris Drew striking first for the home side and Nick Evans on target for the visitors.
It was one-way traffic after that until Salcombe were 23-3 up when Evans landed a second penalty.
Torrington are at home to Plymstock in a re-arranged match this Saturday. Their Devon Junior Cup tie against Totnes has been postponed.