Rugby roundup

Joseph Bulmer

SOUTH Molton gave Plymouth Barbarians a run for their money before going down 22-13.

Barbarians took the lead when hooker Adam Kirtley put the finishing touch to a series of pick and drives deep in South Molton territory. Before long Kirtley’s front-row partner prop Jack Martin went over for the second try of the game. South Molton came back before half time when winger Mark Lee crossed in the corner. After the break a Mark Drayton penalty brought Molton within just four points of their lofty opponents. With the game so evenly poised the next try was going to be crucial. It went to the Plymouth side’s lock Aaron Anderson-Smith. Lee Walsh himself secured the bonus point, scoring in the corner after Barbarians had created an overlap. When Barbarians missed their man with the throw at a line-out, South Molton No.8 Dan Smith was on hand to barge over. Drayton was unsuccessful with the conversion attempt which would have secured the visitors a losing bonus point.

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ILFRACOMBE slipped up away to lowly Buckfastleigh, where they lost 15-8.

It was Combe took the lead with a Byron Montague try and a Dan Brierley penalty in the opening quarter opening up an 8-0 lead. Three Buckfastleigh tries in 15 minutes before the break from Greg Robinson, Carl Nelson and Jack Chew gave them a seven-point cushion which they held on to throughout a scoreless second half.

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TORRINGTON Legends defeated Topsham 13-5 in a Devon Merit Table game.

From the start Torrie dominated the forward exchanges with young prop Steve Lancaster having an outstanding game. Torrie were rewarded with a push-over try from a five-metre scrum with veteran scrum-half Rob Bewes touching down for Steve Herron to covert. Topsham replied late in the first half with a try, but failed to convert it. Following an end-to-end start to the second half, the Torrie forwardstook control and were rewarded with two penalties kicked by Herron.

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BIDEFORD Nomads found themselves fighting a rearguard action against a strong Tiverton outfit that were more disciplined, experienced and ultimately fitter than expected.

A 48-12 reversal left the Nomads battered and bruised, but not broken. From one to 15 the Nomads battled and tackled themselves to a standstill. They ran out of steam in the last quarter with their replacements throwing themselves into the fray with passion but without reward. The hosts were sharper at the breakdown and took a deserved 19-7 lead at the break. Nomads scored a sparkling try on the half hour, set up by the lively Mike Powe, before wing Lee Faux avoided a number of defenders before touching down for Mark North to add the extras. Faux added a second try midway through thehalf, although the game was long gone from the visitors. Troy Hicks put in a strong performance at outside centre and flankers Matt Underwood and Matt Jones tackled ceaselessly. Shaun Woodhead added some pace at half time and Aaron Taylor increased the tackle count, but Nomads were persistently outplayed despite their never-say-die attitude.