Great win for the Lacemen at Allhalows
4th Placed Penryn throw the kitchin sink at Honiton but defence holds out and Honiton power to victory in the second half.
Having played well against second in the league last week and come away with nothing, Honiton faced a similar proposition this week, with the visit of fourth placed Penryn. For the Lacemen every game is now vital if they are to haul their way out of the bottom three and avoid relegation.
Pricey won the toss and elected to playing up the Allhallows slope on what was a perfect afternoon for rugby. Penryn kicked off and right from the off a knock on from the receiving catch was latched apon by the oppositon and for the next 15 minutes of the game Honiton didn’t really see the ball and with wave after wave of attacks it looked to all watch as if the Cornish visitors would run away with an easy crushing win. Penryn broke down Honiton’s resolute defence and got their first score out wide on 6 minutes but the kick at goal was missed . Honiton tried to break the strangle hold the visitors had on the territorial advantage but for thirty five minutes of the half, Honiton just couldn’t get out of their own half and they had to defend for dear life often just yards from their own line. Penryn got their second score which was converted on the 15 minute mark and looked comfortably in control of proceedings with Honiton hanging in there with what was, a fantastic defensive effort against a very large, strong running outfit. This first half defensive effort was to prove key in the out come of the game and having weathered the storm in the last five minutes, an undefended blind side was spotted by scrum half Philip Cooke, who released Bill Baily up the narrow side and his inside pass to Ben Webber saw him in open space, he jinked his way to the line from a long run in. Ollie Cave converted and this bought the half time score to 7-12 in favor of the visitors, who must have been wondering what more they had to do to break Honiton’s resolve.
With the bit between thisr teeth, Honiton then upped the anti and fired into the opposition at every opportunity. The pack who held their own up the slope then started to shunt the Cornishmen about and by disrupting their line outs as well, Honiton had much more posession and with astute kicks, Honiton kept Penryn pined back in their half. Honiton’s first reward was a penalty that Cave slotted and then with good ball from the forwards Cave jinked through some weak tackling but as he was hauled down just short but he managed to get the ball away to the supporting Phil Bennett, who crashed over for a try. Cave converted and Honiton were ahead for the first time in the game. Penryn still had fight in their belly at this stage so stout defence was still at the fore to keep them out but having got on top in the forward battle Honiton started to bullied their way down the field and from a series of good drives, Cave again had good ball to break blind and this time his jinking run went un-checked and he crossed for a great solo effort. He converted to put Honiton out in front on 22-12. With time running out Honiton kicked a final penatly and maybe with their new found dominance they should have gone for the bonus point try but the penalty kick sailed over and Honiton had achieved a remarkable come back, winning 25-12 and scoring 19 unanswered points in the second half.
This was a great game to watch as it was a hard fought battle and the victory owed much to the defensive efforts in the first half when had another score been conceeded heads might of dropped . The opposition were big and good but having weathered a storm in the first half it was clear Honiton wanted it more and especially in the second half when everything just clicked. Honiton’s usual ball carries were on top from and this inspired others to produce their best and with the pack now capable of bully larger packs, survial chances are greatly improved. Cave obviously had a big part to play in proceeding but on a day when graft was the key, the man of the match award went to Tom Irish who made some big hits and carried well but that said, it was one of Honiton’t best performances in ages with every one of the 18 stepping up to deliver the goods.
Honiton are far from out of the woods yet and they are often guilty of dwelling on what they’ve just done. Make no mistake, this was a great win but it must be put to bed and with a weeks break for league action they must prepair them sevles for what will be a tough trip down to Penzance in a fortnights time.