Mar 17, 740 days ago

Match Report: North Wales Crusaders 30-16 Rochdale Hornets

http://www.northwalescrusaders.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/image9.jpgMatch Report: North Wales Crusaders 30-16 Rochdale Hornets

By Ryan Gould at the Glyndwr University Racecourse Stadium

North Wales Crusaders produced a gutsy second half fightback as they secured their third victory in the Northern Rail Cup against Rochdale Hornets.

The Hornets were firmly in driving seat as they held a 16-12 lead at the break, but tries from Rob Massam and Simon Stephens and a stern defensive effort in the second half all but confirms Crusaders’ place in the Bowl Final, and their progression to the knock-out stages at the same time.

North Wales were awarded a penalty for a ball steal and, on the back of that, Johnson opened the scoring for the hosts after an offload from Andy Moulsdale.

But that was met by a swift response from the Hornets as they twice assaulted the Crusaders’ left edge defence, and on both occasions it paid off, with Lee Gaskell and Danny Davies both crossing for tries.

Crusaders were soon back on level terms, however, as, after another sloppy penalty given away by the visitors, Dave McConnell crashed over from close range.

The hosts looked to be in for their third just before half-time, but Middlehurst couldn’t collect Durbin’s pass and it was Rochdale who went over instead, as Gaskell collected and raced 90 metres upfield to give his side the advantage at the interval.

Defence has been the key for Clive Griffiths’ men so far in the Northern Rail Cup, and that proved to be important once again in the second period of this game. The away side couldn’t find a way through, but that wasn’t the case for Crusaders.

Rob Massam put North Wales in the lead for the second time as he touched down in the corner after Jamie Durbin had floated out a pass to the wing.

And Crusaders built on their regained lead as Massam crossed over for his second, with Durbin once again the supplier after Jono Smith fainted and passed left, and Simon Stephens bulldozed his way over late on.

Massam would have been the first ever play to record a hat-trick of tries for the club, but his effort in the final seconds was ruled out as he was in-touch, while Rochdale’s misery was only increased with the dismissal of Gaz Langley for punching.

NORTH WALES CRUSADERS
1.Tommy Johnson
17.Stuart Reardon
3.Christiaan Roets
4.Leon Brennan
5.Rob Massam
6.Andy Moulsdale
7.Jamie Durbin
8.Jonny Walker
14.Dave McConnell
21.Simon Stephens
11.Andy Gorski
12.Gary Middlehurst
13.Jono Smith
Subs:
10.Phil Braddish
16.Ryan MacDonald
29.Stephen Bannister
9.Lee Hudson

Tries: Johnson 5, McConnell 20, Massam 51, 68, Stephens 71
Goals: Johnson 5/5

ROCHDALE HORNETS
1.Wayne English
2.Gaz Langley
30.Lee Gaskell
31.Dave Hull
5.Dave Sutton
6.Paul Crook
7.Steve Roper
8.John Cookson
9.Alex McClurg
10.Warren Thompson
14.Alex Trumper
16.Danny Davies
29.Joe Greenwood
Subs:
11.Chris Baines
32.Nathan Ashe
4.Mike Ratu
28.Gareth Frodsham

Tries: Gaskell 8, 36, Davies 16
Goals: Crook 2/3

Referee: Peter Brooke
HT: 12-16
Attendance: 693
MOTM: Dave McConnell – he drove the side forward from hooker, and his try in the first half was just reward for a strong performance.

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  1. March 17, 2013
    Great shift put in from the Cru lads again. It doesn't matter what league you are in when you see games like the Oldham and Rochdale ones. Well done to the lads. I think we have a genius in Clive !! He must be giving some great half time team talks. Bring on the league games
  2. March 17, 2013
    Well done crusaders
  3. March 17, 2013
    Another Wales triumph and excellent team performance to overcome an unconvincing 'dual registered' outfit!!! However, can we please have some managerial communications re MOTM because this is the second time that the actual recipient of the award has differed from that mentioned in the match report..........
  4. March 17, 2013
    Yes we "gutsed" it out today and wore the opposition down.We would likely have lost a game like that last year.Some immense tackling again and if they did not have Lee Gaskell playing we may have not conceded 3 tries.Thought Jonno was outstanding today.but really a great team effort. Braddish , Mcdonald and Bannister bring that extra dimension in size and physicality that we were short on last year.Great entertainment.Hope we can get over the 1000 in spectators soon.
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