ABBEY reclaimed top spot in Southern Counties North thanks to a three tries to two home
ABBEY reclaimed top spot in Southern Counties North thanks to a three tries to two home victory against Stow-on-the-Wold.
The hosts shot out of the starting blocks and took the lead when Tom Waterhouse kicked a penalty.
Abbey kicked a further penalty to touch to set up a five metre line-out. The ball was lost and Stow took the lead with a try from Ollie Goodrick-Clarke who put down after darting down the narrow side, too far out for the conversion.
Stow maintained the momentum, reclaiming and spreading the ball quickly among the backs. Abbey were kept busy defending, fullback Waterhouse putting in a try-saving tackle. Cafearo, having been off target with one penalty kick, added three points when Abbey’s prop Mark Toland took a yellow card three minutes before the break for a technical infringement following a general warning to the team.
In the dying seconds of the half, quick thinking scrum half Will Bevan took a quick tap penalty to move the ball into the backs and then to Dampies who jinked his way round his defender then showed his pace from 40 metres out to touch down beneath the posts for a conversion by Waterhouse.
Three minutes into the second half Arron Ross, now on as replacement, linked with Waterhouse to threaten the line, but it came to number eight Mike Beckly to touch down. Despite being a man down, Abbey had not just kept out a score but had taken two tries of their own. Although the conversion was missed Waterhouse made amends with a penalty as Stow took their turn to defend and then to attack. First Cafearo put over a penalty then with 10 minutes to go prop Dan Salvage was driven over for a try to bring the visitors within two points.
Waterhouse then broke out to the left, Ross and Dampies combined well to set up the final flourish from centre Luke Burns who touched down beneath the posts for Waterhouse to add the extras.