STOCKPORT LOSE UNBEATEN RECORD IN CLOSE GAME AT WARRINGTON
Fast paced game by Warrington and high penalty count mean Stockport were unable to gain momentum and secured only a losing bonus point in their first loss of the season.
Stockport travelled to Warrington on Saturday still unbeaten this season but the record went in a close fought game. Warrington were arguably the better side just deserving their 23-17 victory, having played a very fast paced game from the off. The first half was very much honours even with Stockport scoring two converted tries to 2 penalties and a converted try just before the break by the home side to make it 13-14. The second half was a different story with Warrington dominating possession and territory. The referee clearly disagreed with a lot of what Stockport did, issuing a lot of penalties against them and this together with the ability of Warrington to get their hands on the ball after a tackle prevented Stockport gaining any real momentum in the second half as Warrington scored another penalty and a converted try to take the 4 points, leaving Stockport with just a losing bonus point as they added just a penalty to make the final score 23-17 to the home side.
There was early indication of Warrington’s intention to play a fast open game but Stockport contained them well until conceding a penalty for offside as Warrington ran from a 5 metre scrum the penalty was converted to make it 3-0 after 15 minutes. Stockport responded quickly with a penalty for a line out 5 metres out. Dean SCHOFIELD took the line out and went for the line, Simon GREEN got the touch down and Liam McGovern converted for 3-7. Good breaks by McGovern and Rory AUSTIN and an injury to centre Josh SCHOFIELD came before Warrington converted another penalty for 6-7 on 30 minutes. Stockport then disrupted a Warrington scrum and had a good attack, winning a penalty to go for another 5 metre line out, Schofield again took the catch and as Warrington chose to stand off, he went for the line and Kieran HIBBS got the touch down. McGovern was on target again for 6-14. On the stroke of half time, Warrington tapped a penalty on the halfway line and the Stockport tackling failed to stop the move and the speedy Warrington right wing went round the outside and ran in to score near the posts. The conversion made it 13-14 at the break.
Warrington started the second half with a good attack but the Stockport defence was good and they responded well and won a penalty on the Warrington 22 to go 13-17 ahead. Simon GREEN just managed to secure the ball as Warrington attacked. The home side continued to attack but were again turned over, this time by Jordan PEARSON. As the game entered the final quarter there was a period of serious pressure by Warrington and eventually a short pass gave the centre a run through and despite being tackled on the line he got the score, which was converted for 20-17. The home side added a penalty on 73 minutes to go 6 points clear before a very good Stockport attack, started by a strong run into the home half by Stockport wing Matt KING. The ball was recycled and a break by McGovern took play near the Warrington line, patience was needed as the forwards took control but the ball was moved right and the final pass was knocked on. Full back Rhodri MAYOR just rescued the ball as Warrington hacked on and Stockport had to withstand more Warrington pressure for the last 5 minutes, but there was no more scoring to leave the final score at 23-17.
Next week is the rearranged fixture with Douglas IOM, with a 1.45 kick off.