Stags drive over the Motors
Vauxhall Motors 17 Stevenage Town 22 Stevenage went clear of their hosts after winning this bruising encounter to remain unbeaten away from home. Town were determined to begin the match on the front foot, having had to come from behind in every league enc
Vauxhall Motors 17 Stevenage Town 22
Stevenage went clear of their hosts after winning this bruising encounter to remain unbeaten away from home.
Town were determined to begin the match on the front foot, having had to come from behind in every league encounter so far.
A good start was secured through strong penetrating runs from Kris Foskett and Gareth Lewis in the centre.
This good field position was capitalised on by the sheer dominance of the Stevenage pack in the set pieces.
A 5m scrum was won against the head and the pack powered the weaker Vauxhall scrum backwards over their own line to allow Gareth Rovers the first score of the day.
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In the face of a strong wind, the difficult conversion was missed by Lewis.
A rare first-half foray into the Town half by Vauxhall led to their only points of the half via a drop goal.
Tavita Faamausili was sin binned for retaliating after backing up his team-mate Michael Wilson.
Down to 14 men, Stags closed ranks and resorted to absorbing the pressure.
With the return of the Samoan to the dominant Town front row, service resumed as normal.
Clean possession from the pack coupled with fast hands from Gary Trewartha and Wilson allowed Lewis to pick his trademark line and cut the Vauxhall defence in half to stroll under the posts for the second score.
With the conversion added, Town ended the first half bruised but ahead.
After the break, a long missed pass from Motors resulted in an overlap out wide and their first try of the day and the conversion was successful.
A period of sustained pressure allowed Tom Cowley, making his impressive first start of the season, to charge down the Vauxhall half back on his own line.
With an ability to smell a score that has seen him become the league's second highest try scorer of the season, Roberts pounced on the loose ball for his second of the day and 13th for the season.
The conversion was missed but the Stags thought they had secured the win when a typical break from the elusive Ian Crompton on the wing deep in his own half led to him being hauled down short of the Vauxhall line.
Iain Penny secured good ball and quick hands resulted in Adam Amos finding himself with only one defender between him and the line.
A bone crunching hand-off allowed the big man to dive into the corner.
Stevenage again under-estimated their opponents, and some sloppy tackling, allowed Vauxhall to cross the try line for the second time of the day.
The conversion was added and the difference between the two teams reduced to five points to cause a nervous last five minutes for Stevenage.
Stags' usual strong defence returned for their second shift of the day and they hung on to secure the two London Three North West points.