St Neots 19 St Ives 3 NEOTS won the clash of the Saints as they defeated Ives in a local derby at the Common on Saturday afternoon. St Neots were desperate to make up for defeat in their opening game of the season and fielded a youthful team, with many players keen to make their promotion to the first team a permanent feature. Early pressure from a well-organised St Neots pack put the visitors on the back foot for the opening ten minutes of the game. Despite this, St Ives took the lead through a dubious penalty which turned out to be their only serious scoring chance of the match. The visitors opted to kick for goal rather than attempt a run at the unyielding defensive line of St Neots. With the majority of possession and good forward momentum, the three-point deficit served to inspire the home team into adopting a must-win attitude. The result was unrelenting pressure, followed by a well taken Adam Peel try, converted by man of the match James Fitch. Another unconverted try, awarded in somewhat questionable circumstances by the referee, was notched up by Steve Foster shortly before half time. After the break the exchanges continued in a similar fashion with the home forwards controlling the scrum. With tempers fraying St Neots maintained their composure, in the face of some strong-arm tactics from St Ives, to score a try straight from the training manual. An offensive lineout presented the scrum half with quick ball to move to the waiting inside centre Philippe Fern\u00E8y, whose elusive run and offload provided captain Martyn Allen with an opportunity to score. James Fitch provided the boot to add another two points from the conversion. Late in the game full back Russell Warrington was unlucky not to add a further five points after a period of attacking play. St Neots coach Chris Liley said: "It was nice to see the hard work and commitment to training is starting to show through." With pre-season friendlies now over, attention turns to Stamford College in the preliminary round of the EDF Energy junior vase.