The home squad were without the influential Ben Hyde, who will be out for the rest of the season with the injury sustained last week at Syston. They brought in Eddie Newsum to the No. 8 position, in what was a strong line-up.
In excellent playing conditions the sides seemed to be closely matched with the big Sheffield pack showing early signs of their power at close quarters. It was The Greens however that managed to get the first score on the board when following a series of drives, the ball was spun out wide to the right and Gareth Mist strolled into the corner. Paul Cook added the extras with an excellent strike. Having taken the lead after only 5 minutes the home team were soon given warning of the South Yorkshire boys intent when they drove forward from a lineout in the home ‘22’ and hooker Ianto Jones got the touchdown. The conversion from Ben Parker put the sides on a level footing after only 9 minutes of play.
Scunthorpe had their fare share of possession but every time they got into a good attacking position they fell foul of the referee at the breakdown and within a few moments they went from threatening the Sheffield line to defending their own, from two successive penalties. Sheffield moved the ball well through the hands, and good supporting work from fullback Andrew Hodgson and a missed tackle in mid-field resulted in him touching down under the posts. Parker added the extras and the visitors had taken the lead by 14 points to 7 in the 26th minute. Scunthorpe went down the pitch and following a turnover, Tom Foster exploited the miss-match in defence and weaved his way through to the line. Cook once more added the conversion and the teams were again level after 31 minutes of the first half. As the half drew to a close, the home boys conceded a series of penalties which took play to their 5 metre line and Sheffield opted for a series of scrummages. For many of these the referee penalised the home team and the visitors continued to opt for the scrum rather than the lineout. Eventually, after no headway had been made, it was the visitors that were penalised and Scunthorpe got out of jail and the half-time whistle sounded.
With the game finely balanced, Scunthorpe were first to strike when strong ball carrying by Dave Garbutt, Grant Elliott and Tom Hughes, took play into the Sheffield ‘22’ where Jacob Hardy was quick to spot the gap at the breakdown and run through for the try. The conversion was missed but The Greens had taken the lead by 19 points to 14 after only 3 minutes of the second half. However, the home boys were once more on the wrong end of the referee’s whistle and Sheffield took play into the home half. A delicate chip through by Matt Law resulted in Lewis Bowman regathering and scoring in the right hand corner. An excellent kick by Parker added the extras and the visitors had once more taken the lead by 21 points to 19 after 22 minutes of the second period.
Scunthorpe then started having the benefit of the decisions and were awarded a penalty in the 26th minute only for Cook’s effort to hit the cross-bar and bounce back into play. Only a minute later and Scunthorpe had Ollie Cole sent to the bin for an offence at the breakdown. Despite this, it was the home team that had the momentum and when they were awarded another penalty after 32 minutes, Cook converted and they had taken the lead by 22 points to 21. As the clocked ticked on to the 37th minute, Sheffield attempted to run from just inside their own half. As the ball was dropped it was seized upon by Will Robinson who raced in from 35 metres out. Cook added the extras for a 29 points to 21 lead. Scunthorpe continued to press and as the visitors had a player binned, Cook took full advantage and struck another penalty to put the result beyond doubt at 32 points to 21 in injury time. This was overall a much better performance from the Greens in recent weeks, which will have pleased the coaching staff.