Under 18 girls dominate the Minxes despite going one player down

Weekend rugby union preview.
Weekend rugby union preview.

Sleaford U18 girls 52

Melbourne 12

Playing their first match of the season, the Sleaford and Spalding Under 18 girls faced Melbourne Minxes in the Midlands League at Sleaford.

They featured two Spalding players as part of a cluster arrangement this season which helped to bolster numbers of the fairly inexperienced team.

Nevertheless, the girls made a strong start to the match, with key experienced players helping to settle the nerves from the whistle.

Sarah Bill, at 10 for the first time, broke through the defence having received the kick and Bethan Owen was on hand to collect the scoring pass close to the opposition line within the first minute.

The girls soon strung together unanswered points spread across the team in a demonstration of good support play and excellent running from the backs.

Spalding’s Sophie Earth scored a wingers’ try out wide before heading under the posts and Emily Perrins poached a good support try, making the most of a strong break and pass from Owen.

Bill then crossed for her own score following another mazy run before Hannah Dennis crossed at the end of the half after a storming run.

With Bill kicking four conversions from five it left the score 33-0 at half-time although centre Owen was forced off with an injury which gave Melbourne a one-player advantage.

The second half also started well. A lineout around halfway was won and fed to Bill, who scored after a good passing interchange with Jazz Clark.

Clark then scored one of her own, taking the ball from the kick off and searing down the wing, beating a number of tackles.

Melbourne started to get back into the game as they took advantage of the additional player. Strong running through the centre saw them score twice and, with the scrums going to uncontested at their request, they were dangerous on the break.

However, the pack soon rallied with strong tackling out wide from both Charlotte Hancock and Earth on the wings, it was Sleaford who got the final score with Clark throwing an enormous dummy pass in the centre before scoring under the posts.

Bill capped a strong performance with two further conversions.

Sarah McConchie at scrum half had a convincing game, linking well with the backs and putting in some rugged tackles. It is hard to believe she was making her debut in the position and she was well worthy of the player of the day award.

Results:

West Bridgeford 12 - 64 Sleaford U15

Midlands 3 East (North). Sleaford 1st XV 27 - 26 Chesterfield Panthers

Sleaford 2nd XV 35 - 7 RAF Eagles