WHITECRAIGS 66, STEWARTRY 3
RAMPANT Whitecraigs ran in 12 tries on Saturday as they blew away the latest team to travel to West Lodge.
In a clinical performance the run-away league leaders destroyed a stubborn Stewartry side despite struggling to get going initially. Even though the bonus point had been secured before the break it was the visitors who enjoyed most of the possession early on. Craigs opened the scoring just five minutes in when some scintillating interplay eventually put Stuart Pollock through a gap for his first try of the afternoon.
And it did not take long for Stuart Henderson to extend the lead after he took a quick tap penalty and dived over for another touch down. But after starting so well Craigs were forced to defend for the next half hour as Stewartry pushed for a try. Strong defending kept the visitors out, and they only managed a solitary penalty, but Whitecraigs were left with 14 players when Fraser Campbell was sin-binned for one infringement too many. Being a man down did not affect the Whitecraigs attacking play though because they immediately turned the ball over on the half way line and Graeme Fisher burst past a host of despairing defenders to notch the his first of four tries on the day. Ian Laidlaw added the bonus point try on the stroke of half time giving Craigs a 20-3 lead at the break.
After the interval Craigs ran riot with Garry Johnston scoring almost straight from the kick-off after a flowing backs move before Pollock added another moments later. Craigs supporters hardly had time to draw breath between scores and the next was added by Phil Nicol after 60 minutes. Man-of-the-match Fisher, whose powerful running was causing havoc for the hapless defenders, got the next two tries. All the players wanted to add their name to the score sheet and it was Ben Blaire who got in on the act with two tries in quick succession, both scored after strong work by the forwards. Fittingly Fisher concluded the day's try-fest to leave the final score at 66-3. Unfortunately none of the Craig’s players had their kicking boots on and despite three people trying their luck only three of the 12 conversions found the target.
Attention now turns to next week when Whitecraigs travel to Linlithgow for a top of the table clash which could go a long way to deciding the outcome of the league. Delighted head coach Jim Henderson said: "The first twenty-five minutes were as expected with the forwards dominating the game and Stewartry certainly gave us some difficulties. But the work rate upped and eventually we broke through with the tries. We are now thinking about next week's game which is huge and we need as much support as possible."
Team: Laidlaw, Christine, Campbell, F. Hunter, Howarth, B. Blamire, K. Hunter, Pollock, Henderson, Stevenson, Savage, Nicol, Percival, Johnston, Fisher. Subs - Stewart, Nisbet, Turnbull.