Rochdale Hornets 24-30 Oldham RLFC
Monday 28th August 2017, 15:00pm
Super 8s - Round: 4
Chris Riley, Jake Eccleston, Ryan Maneely, Rob Massam, Jovili Taira,
Lewis Palfrey 2,
Joe Burke 2, Luke Adamson, Adam Clay, Luke Hooley,
Luke Hooley 5,
DERBY DESPAIR FOR HORNETS
Rochdale Hornets fell to their first defeat to Oldham this season in their Bank Holiday Monday derby clash, as the visitors came away with a 30-24 victory.
The home side had clawed their way back into the contest after a poor first half, but they couldn’t turn pressure into points in a period when the momentum was in their favour in the second 40.
The defeat means that Oldham and Swinton Lions are just one point behind now, with next week’s encounter with the latter becoming even more crucial.
Oldham opened the scoring through Joe Burke, as off the back of back-to-back penalties Matthew Wilkson sent him over under the sticks, with Luke Hooley converting.
Hornets responded through Chris Riley on 12 minutes, as he collected Lewis Palfrey’s cut-out ball to finish well in the corner and pick up a four pointer.
Within three minutes Oldham were over again though, as David Hewitt’s towering bomb was spilled by Riley, and a couple of tackles later Luke Adamson forced his way over.
The hosts came up with an immediate response, as Danny Yates’ grubber was dropped by the defence and Jake Eccleston pounced to cut the deficit to 12-8.
Palfrey executed a brilliant tackle when he shot out the line to force a knock on, only to be judged to have knocked on himself. A penalty from the next set then led to Hooley adding a penalty goal to make it a six point game.
On the half hour mark Lewis Galbraith was sent to the sin bin, as the referee claimed he tripped Hooley after the fullback had made a break. Two minutes later the man advantage paid off, as the ball was shipped out wide to Adam Clay for a walk-in four pointer.
Five minutes from the break Jono Smith was forced from the field with a head injury, with blood pouring from his nose after a nasty clash of heads which ended his afternoon.
Eccleston went close to grabbing a second soon after, but Hornets headed into the sheds 18-8 down at half-time.
The hosts started the second half on top, and within seven minutes Ryan Maneely darted over from dummy half to put his side within four points.
A sustained period of pressure followed on the Oldham try line, however Rochdale allowed chance after chance to go begging, as they failed to post any points in a crucial period of the game.
With 11 minutes left on the clock Burke charged over for his second to land a killer blow, taking the score out to 24-14.
Rob Massam had made his long-awaited to return from injury at the break, coming on from the bench, and he somehow found space to score from Galbraith’s flick pass with five minutes to go. Palfrey couldn’t add the conversion, as the deficit was cut to six points.
Lee Mitchell then came up with an unforgivable knock-on inside his own half, which resulted in Oldham putting the game out of reach. Ant Walker tried to stop Hewitt attempting a drop-goal, before the halfback stepped away from the tackle and sent Hooley over under the sticks.
There was still time for a Massam break to lead to Jo Taira scoring a late six pointer, but before the game could be restarted the hooter sounded, condemning Hornets to a 30-24 defeat.
Rochdale Hornets: Declan Kay, Kevin Penny, Jake Eccleston, Lewis Galbraith, Chris Riley, Lewis Palfrey, Danny Yates, Lee Mitchell, Ryan Maneely, Jo Taira, Jono Smith, Jordan Case, Ant Walker. Subs: Lewis Hatton, Gavin Bennion, Matty Hadden, Rob Massam
Tries: Riley (12), Eccleston (18), Maneely (47), Massam (75), Taira (79)
Goals: Palfrey 2/5
Sin bin: Galbraith (30 – tripping)
Oldham RLFC: Luke Hooley, Adam Clay, Ben Morris, George Tyson, Kameron Pearce Paul, Scott Leatherbarrow, David Hewitt, Jack Spencer, Matthew Wilkinson, Joe Burke, Liam Thompson, Liam Bent, Luke Adamson. Subs: Kenny Hughes, Sadiq Adebiyi, Michael Ward, Sam Gee
Tries: Burke (5, 69), Adamson (15), Clay (32), Hooley (78)
Goals: Hooley 5/5, Leatherbarrow 0/1
Referee: Gareth Hewer
Penalty Count: 7-5