Stags Finish Season/Roosters Get Going
Midlands 3 East (South) Huntingdon Stags 12 Northampton Old Scouts 17 ATTEMPTING to play a more adventurous style of rugby cost Stags the match in their final fixture of 2007/08. Stags captain Tom McCreadie said his side had enjoyed a good season: We onl
Midlands 3 East (South)
Huntingdon Stags 12 Northampton Old Scouts 17
ATTEMPTING to play a more adventurous style of rugby cost Stags the match in their final fixture of 2007/08.
Stags captain Tom McCreadie said his side had enjoyed a good season: "We only had two disappointing results through the season and fifth place was more than we had expected at the start of the season.
"All bodes well for next season when we can expect to see some seasoned campaigners returning and we will look to secure a top-two finish."
In an open and well-contested match, the game turned on two defensive lapses and one controversial try which consigned the hosts to another home defeat against a club whom they had beaten on the road.
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The first lapse came on 10 minutes when the Scouts' right wing, who was certainly not short of pace and guile, was allowed far too much freedom for an individual try.
Stags hit back well and a quick penalty allowed Dale Abblitt to cross, with Damien Whales converting to nudge the home side in front.
A lapse in concentration cost Stags dear and Northampton ran in tow tries to build a 17-7 lead by the interval.
The second half continued as the first had ended with Stags having the majority of the territory but, once again, a lack of patience and composure and the final pass going astray let them down.
Though Stags were now playing sevens-style rugby, no score came until Ben Strangeways was driven over with eight minutes left. There was not enough time to produce another score.
Overall the Stags can view the season with satisfaction achieving 11 victories and finishing fifth in the table.
With 151 points out of a total of 420 Whales made a huge contribution and, although his appearances were limited, Simon Leader headed the tries scored column with 10.
Encouragement for Stags were the performances of the second string throughout the season, who finished with a fine 17-12 win against Kettering III.
Meanwhile, St Ives Roosters got the rugby league season under way by reaching the final of the Coventry Bears' Invitational Nines tournament.
Roosters, fielding three players making their first team debuts, reached the final before going down 12-6 to the host club.
Coach Ian Hill said: "It was a great effort from the start by the players, who played very well in difficult conditions."
St Ives opened the competition in the group stages against Coventry and were narrowly defeated despite a Ben Pinnion try before thumping Wolverhampton Warlords 26-0 thanks to Michael Drake and Jamie Noble's scores.
North Derbyshire were dispatched 22-0 with Oli Jones, Noble and Pinnion crossing the line before Heavy Woollen Donkeys were cast aside 33-0 with David Sykes among the scorers.
Redditch Ravens were also defeated, setting up a final clash against Coventry where Jones gave his side the lead before Bears levelled and snatched the win with seconds remaining.