IN what turned out to be almost a carbon copy of the first team game the U20s steamrollered the Rhinos 48-10 at a sun-drenched Langtree Park, writes Graham Henthorne.
The Saints were just too good across the park for the previously unbeaten Rhinos and leapfrogged them at the top of the table.
The Rhinos did take the lead as back to back penalties allowed winger Mo Agoro to score in the corner but only after Mark Percival had been pushed into touch at the try line moments earlier.
The lead didn’t last for long, however, as the Saints quickly took control.
Danny Jones was held up over the line before two quick penalties later Anthony Walker was sending him in for his first try for the season.
On the restart the Rhinos were again pinged, this time for ball stealing, and from the resulting penalty Lee Gaskell put Jordan Case clear. He took it on to the full back before switching it inside to the supporting Danny Yates for the score.
The third try in a magical five minute spell was scored by the outstanding Carl Forster. His fellow prop Anthony Walker had been caught head high, and not for the first time, giving the Saints relieving metres downfield. Nathan Ashe was held short but a delightful last tackle grubber from Gaskell was fumbled into Forster’s hands and he scrambled over.
The Rhinos finally gathered themselves mounting a wave of attacks as the half neared it’s end but the Saints solid defence again came to the fore keeping the visitors at bay for three repeat sets in a row.
The killer blow was delivered on the stroke of the interval again by Forster. Great work at dummy half from Marcus Baines caught the Rhinos on the hop and his offload gave Forster the space to reach over the line for the score.
The second period began and the Saints carried on where they’d left off. A weaving run out of defence from Ashe and another Baines dart put the Saints on the front foot allowing Gaskell to dance through the line to score untouched.
Forster came the closest he’s likely to, to scoring a hat-trick as he had, in his words, a try taken away as it was ruled he was held up over the line.
From the repeat set his front row partner Walker bumped the would be tacklers out of the way for his well-deserved try.
The game went into a bit of a lull for twenty minutes before a consolation try to speedy wingman Chisholm was sandwiched between a brace of tries to Jordan Case put the Saints in sight of fifty.
This was the performance and scoreline that will make the rest of the teams stand up and take notice of the Saints. Again hard work in defence brought its rewards as yet another team found itself strangled into submission and then put to the sword by the Saints.
This was a great all round team display but again founded on the work of Walker and Forster up front.
Tries: Lee Gaskell, Danny Yates, Anthony Walker, Carl Forster 2, Jordan Case 2, Danny Jones.
Goals: Jamie Foster 8.
Tries: Mo Agoro, Jamel Chisholm.
Goals: Ollie Olds.
Half Time: 24-4
Full Time: 48-10
18. Nathan Ashe; 1. Mark Percival, 3. Josh Jones, 4. Adam Swift, 2. Jamie Foster; 6. Lee Gaskell, 7. Danny Yates; 8. Anthony Walker, 9. Dom Speakman, 10. Carl Forster, 11. Scott Hale, 12. Jordan Case, 13. Danny Jones.
Subs: 14. Marcus Baines, 15. Alex Trumper, 16. Joe Bate, 17. Jordan Hand.
1. Jimmy Watson; 2. Mo Agoro, 3. Jack Pring, 4. Jimmy Keinhorst, 5. Jamel Chisholm; 6. Sean Casey, 7. Ollie Olds; 17. Colton Roche, 9. Liam Hood, 10. Brad Singleton, 11. Danny Bravo, 12. Jay Pitts, 13. Aaron Brown.
Subs: 14. Clayton Stott, 15. Daniel Smith, 16. Jake Normington, 8. Gareth Morgan.