Rochdale Hornets 0-42 Featherstone Rovers
Monday 2nd April 2018, 15:00pm
Championship - Round: 9
Harry Newman 3, Josh Hardcastle, Martyn Ridyard, Luke Briscoe 3,
Martyn Ridyard 5,
HORNETS HUMBLED BY FEV
Rochdale Hornets ended their busy Easter schedule with a heavy defeat to Featherstone Rovers, going down 42-0 at the Crown Oil Arena.
The torrential downpour was a reflection of the result and the performance, as once again errors cost Alan Kilshaw’s side dearly.
It was always going to be a difficult afternoon against a Featherstone side who are favourites to make the top four, but there were some improved spells for the home side either side of the break.
Their resistance broke though, and a late hat-trick by record breaker Luke Briscoe blew up the score line in the final quarter.
Hornets were struggling with injuries, as Danny Yates, Declan Kay and Joe Taira were all ruled out, however they were boosted by the return of Lewis Hatton; with Ryan Maneely and Callum Mulkeen coming in.
Hatton ran hard and tackled well, as his hunger to be back out on the field was clear for all to see, while Dave Allen covered every blade of grass with his usual industrial display.
Lee Mitchell’s effort couldn’t be knocked, as he took the ball up with purpose in every carry and gave his all in defence.
Deon Cross also came out of the game with some positives to show, as he covered both wing spots, centre and fullback during the course of the contest.
The first Rovers try of the game came after seven minutes, as moments after a great try saver by Earl Hurst, Harry Newman beat his opposite man at the second time of asking.
Within five minutes the Featherstone centre had his second, cruising over after Cross was left isolated on the right edge.
Rovers opted for the opposite wing for their third score, as following a goal-line drop-out Josh Hardcastle planted the ball down despite the attention of Billy Brickhill and Rob Massam.
On 24 minutes Newman completed his hat-trick, bouncing off an attempted tackle to dive in once again on the Hornets’ right edge.
The hosts saw out the remaining 16 minutes with an improved defensive display, and headed into the sheds 22-0 down.
They picked up their momentum in the opening stages of the second half, as the rain started to hammer down.
Then, just after the hour mark, Rovers were in again following a last tackle break from Connor Farrell, as his kick over the top resulted in a scramble for the ball which ended in Martyn Ridyard touching down.
On 68 minutes, Briscoe had his first as he raced over in the corner to set a new record for tries scored in consecutive games for the club.
He had another within four minutes, benefitting from Ian Hardman’s break, before completing his hat-trick with a walk-in four minutes from time to round off a 42-0 victory.
HORNETS: Richard Lepori, Deon Cross, Earl Hurst, Billy Brickhill, Rob Massam, Lewis Palfrey, Dec Gregory, Lewis Hatton, Ben Moores, Lee Mitchell, Gary Middlehurst, Dave Allen, Luke Adamson. Subs: Ryan Maneely, Toby Adamson, Pat Moran, Callum Mulkeen.
ROVERS: Ian Hardman, Luke Briscoe, Josh Hardcastle, Harry Newman, Shaun Robinson, Martyn Ridyard, Tom Holmes, Luke Cooper, Keal Carlile, Brad Knowles, Connor Farrell, John Davies, James Lockwood. Subs: Matty Wildie, Gareth Hock, Sam Brooks, Misi Taulapapa.
Tries: Newman (7, 12, 24), Hardcastle (21), Ridyard (65), Briscoe (68, 72, 76) Goals: Ridyard 5/8
Rochdale13 Hornets man of the match: Dave Allen was everywhere once again, racking up big numbers in defence and looking to spark something in attack.
Penalty count: 10-9