St Ives 19 v 20 Devonport Sevices
Last Saturday at Alexandra Road St Ives welcomed Plymouth side Devonport Services in their latest South West One West League match.
Head Coach Rob Elloway named a side with only two changes to the team that travelled to Hornets last weekend. Martyn Lawrance returned to the back row in place of Aden Brassington and Elloway named himself among the replacements.
The game was played in very windy conditions that St Ives had the advantage of in the first half of the game. It wasn’t long before the Hakes used the advantage of the elements and kept Devonport pinned back in their own half for long periods. The breakthrough came when Joe Parma crossed from close in to give the Hakes their first points of the afternoon after 12 minutes. Dan Magee slotted the conversion to make the score 7-0.
The pattern of the game continued and the visitors found it increasingly difficult to break out of their own half. Another St Ives attack this time down the left side of the field saw the ball moved through several phases before hooker Connor Bick off loaded superbly to flanker Chris Quick who slid over the line to score the Hakes second try of the match. No conversion this time but the Hakes were now 12 points ahead with no reply.
In the 28th minute in one of Devonport’s rare excursions into the St Ives half of the field during the first half the referee awarded them a penalty kick after the the St Ives defence was judged to be offside. Devonport fly half Richard West stepped up and kicked the 3 points to make the score St Ives 12, Devonport 3.
In the last play before the break the St Ives players found themselves camped in the Devonport 22 once more. They were keen to score again to give themselves more of a cushion before the break. The breakthrough this time was made by second row Jamie Prisk who crashed over the line to score, Magee added the conversion to make the score at the break St Ives 19, Devonport 3.
It was inevitable that St Ives would come under pressure from the visitors in the second half as they played against the strong wind but the last time St Ives played a half of rugby at Alexandra Road without scoring must test the memory of any St Ives supporter.
Devonport grabbed their first points of the afternoon when Rhys Williams broke through the St Ives defence to score in the 52nd minute, no conversion saw the score move on to 19 points to 8.
St Ives battled well against the elements and did manage to break into the Devonport half against the strong wind but without troubling the scoreboard. In the 65th minute Devonport’s Mark Friend stripped the ball from a St Ives player in the centre of the field and broke free to run half the length of the pitch to score the second try for the visitors. West added the conversion to put Devonport only 4 points behind the Hakes at 19-15.
The Devonport players grew visibly in confidence and began to look for the try that would put them ahead in the match for the first time. In the 70th minute the referee was playing a penalty advantage in favour of the visitors when West put a hopeful kick through the St Ives defence which Sam Bennett chased through to touch down and score the try. The conversion was missed but Devonport now lead by 20 points to 19 for the first time in the match.
St Ives responded well to going behind and pressed hard into the Devonport half. In the 76th minute after a spell of pressure in the visitors 22 their forwards managed to get the ball over the try line only for it to be held up preventing the try.
St Ives ran out of time a few minutes later and the referee blew the final whistle to confirm Devonport as winners by the single point and condemn St Ives to only their second defeat at home this season.
With their second victory over St Ives this season Devonport move up to 6th in the league while St Ives slip a place to 4th spot level on points with 3rd placed side Newent who defeated leaders Launceston last time out.
The Hakes are back in action this coming Saturday with a re-arranged fixture at Teignmouth. Kick off in Devon is scheduled for 2:30pm, any travelling support would be very welcome.
St Ives: Ben Taylor, Connor Bick, Leigh Hocking, Jamie Prisk, James Watson, Martyn Lawrance, Chris Quick, Joji Volaisaya, Liam Jolly, Rhys Brownfield, Peter Mabbott, Joe Parma, Tom Nicholas (Captain), Jack Kessell, Dan Magee.
Replacements: Rob Elloway, Sam Carter, Sam Vernon (All Used).