The Greens travelled into Warwickshire with a settled squad but excluded influential Centre Oli Wood who is out through injury.
Scunthorpe were fast out of the blocks with some powerful play by the pack and had racked up 14 points after 18 minutes of play. First, a catch and drive resulted in a try for Gareth Mist after 7 minutes which Paul Cook converted and then when the ball was struck into the home ‘22’ from a penalty, the same play was engineered for Nick Syddall to touch down. Cook once more added the extras for a 14 points to nil advantage after 18 minutes.
The home boys did come back into the game with some good interplay from their threes to take the game into the Scunthorpe half and were rewarded with a penalty but the kick was missed by Ben Cooper in the 20th minute. They did however get on the board when once more using their expansive three quarter game, they established a position in the Scunthorpe ‘22’ and from a scrummage they moved the ball to the right and full-back Richard Johnson found the gap for the try. Cooper failed with the kick, so after 25 minutes of the first half, The Greens were still in front by 14 points to 5. Play continued to be mainly mid-field as both teams were unable to find a way through some strong defences. The Greens did however gain a penalty some 35 metres out in mid-field and Cook once more obliged with the 3 points. So, after 35 minutes of the first period, Scunthorpe were leading by 17 points to 7 and so the score remained as the teams went into the break.
Scunthorpe gained a penalty after only 2 minutes of the re-start but Cook was unable to convert. The Nuns went through multiple phases as they pressed the Scunthorpe line and were rewarded when Leigh Thompson powered over. Crucially the kick was once more missed, so The Greens still maintained a healthy lead at 17 points to 10. Scunthorpe once more took play into the home ‘22’ and whilst the Nuns were desperately defending their line, they infringed once too often for the referees liking and had a man sent to the bin. From the resulting penalty, Gareth Mist lead his pack in the drive for the line, which was completed by Grant Elliott. Cook again added the extras with a fine strike, to take the score to 24 points to 10, after 10 minutes of the second half.
The Greens play up to this point had been fairly solid but thereafter mistakes crept in, with the defence not as unforgiving as before and also some of the attacking play resulted in passes being forced and the ball being easily given away or turned over. The Nuns took full advantage of this and scored a good individual try when Elliott Brown broke through several tackles to complete a run from near half-way and touchdown under the posts. Cooper added the extras and the home boys were back in the game after 14 minutes of the second period.
For the remainder of the game, fortunes swayed first one way and then the other. Both sides suffered injury with The Greens first losing Ben Hyde and then Josh Bird. They fortunately overcame all these traumas and managed to hold on and take the points back to North Lincolnshire.
Match Report by LWJClayton