The Titans unbeaten run comes to an end
Taunton came crashing back down to earth with a poor performance against Henley Hawks
Taunton Titans lost their unbeaten start to the season as they were well beaten by Henley Hawks in all departments, apart from the scrum, with the visitors thoroughly deserving their 5 points.
It was Henley that made the best start as they exploited some weak Titans defence, which was the story of the game from the home sides perspective, when number 8 Marcus Lowe took the inside pass to score. Scrum Half George Jackson converted and did so again 3 minutes later when back rower David Hyde crashed his way over. Jackson kicked a penalty to take a 17 point lead before the Titans got on the score board.
After reclaiming the kick off and keeping hold of the ball for several phase, centre Nick Mason made a great break. The ball was taken on an Tom Popham went close before Lewis Webb managed to sneak over. This then made the game swing back and forth with Henley scoring again through pacey winger Jack Robinson with Jackson converting. Taunton then from a lineout used the full width of the pitch and went from one side to the other before fly half Kieran Hill delayed the pass and created the space for winger Ollie Rice, who hit a great line, to beat the defence and score under the posts. Kieran Hill converted before the Hawks prop Bradley Cook kicked a penalty from the half way line to make the half time score 12 – 27.
The home side needed to up their game in the 2nd half but it was the visitors who scored straight away with full back Liam O’Neil the benefactor of some more weak Titans defence. Taunton replied with a converted try from Sam Prior who was the benefactor of a push over try as the Henley pack were driven backwards. Henley then responded immediately with a try from Xavier Andre. The Titans captain Nick Mason closed the gap with a try under the posts. A quick tap deep in the Titans half was taken through the phases before Popham made a clean break and timed his pass to Mason who had the pace and strength to beat the defence. Toby East converted and then Henley put the game firmly to bed with their 6th try scored by second row and captain Jacob Albon. The Titans then scored their 5th try after East dislodged the ball in the tackle in the Henley 22 and the Titans pounced on the loose ball. They crashed it up through backs and forwards before getting the ball out wide to Rob Allen who barged his way over in the corner. The Titans tried to claim a 2nd bonus but like the rest of the game fell short.