BT West Division 1
Kilmarnock RFC 0
Newton Stewart RFC 27
Newton Stewart RFC travelled to Kilmarnock on Saturday for their latest league game.
The game started as it was to continue, with Newton Stewart in control. They passed with accuracy and ran good lines in attack whilst continuing to show the diligence and organisation in defence which has been apparent in recent games.
An early penalty was awarded to Newton Stewart following a Kilmarnock infringement, however the attempt from stand off Jamie Muir went wide of the mark.
The first points of the match came for Newton Stewart in the 14th minute when back row Mark McCornick hit a superb angle to collect a pass from hooker David Montgomery and explode through the Kilmarnock defence for a try. The conversion attempt by Muir was a tough one from out wide and he couldn’t quite find the target once again.
It wasn’t long until a further score followed for the Reds. Some impressive handling and strong running from the backs brought the ball close to the Kilmarnock try line again, but a fantastic tackle by the hosts stopped Newton Stewart short. Some quick recycling of the ball followed however and Montgomery picked the ball from the back of a ruck and threw himself over the line for another try in the corner. Once again the conversion was a difficult one and Muir could not add the extras: 0 - 10.
Newton Stewart remained in control for the remainder of the first half. Kilmarnock were forced to defend their line and did so effectively for the most part. When the hosts did obtain some possession they were easily subdued by the Reds who were comfortable in defence.
The only remaining score of the first half was another penalty for NSRFC for an offside offence by Kilmarnock after 34 minutes. This time Muir’s kick was straight through the posts to make the half time score 0 - 13.
After the break Newton Stewart continued to dominate the play and began to demonstrate some particularly impressive scrummaging. After 60 minutes NSRFC were camped on the Kilmarnock line having had a series of scrums and gaining momentum all the time. Five metres out from the try line another colossal scrum from the Reds saw them push the Kilmarnock pack right over the line with James Wallace at number 8 toeing the ball all the way. At the last moment however Wallace was deemed to have knocked the ball on as he made to score the try and the long spell of pressure looked to have finished without any points to show for it.
Less than five minutes later however Newton Stewart were back prowling around the Kilmarnock line. Patience paid off after a series of rucks when captain William McCornick powered over the line from short range to advance the Newton Stewart lead. Muir converted this time to bring the score to 0-20.
With 68 minutes on the clock the Reds were back on the attack again. This time an impressive solo try from the previously unsuccessful James Wallace who made an incisive run from the halfway line breaking tackles to touch down for the final try of the game and securing the all important bonus point. Muir converted again and the game finished with Newton Stewart RFC comfortable winners at 0-27.
After three games so far this season Newton Stewart sit top of the league with three wins and two bonus points. The team were assured in their performance against Kilmarnock and can be proud of their consistent defence and impressive scrummaging. The sometimes aberrant line out was also functioning much more effectively and overall the team will be pleased with their performance.
Man of the match this week was hooker David Montgomery who was instrumental in the dominance of the scrum, but also made some impressive carries in the loose as well as scoring a try.
Some rescheduling of league games due to cup commitments means the next game for Newton Stewart is not until Saturday 24th October away to Helensburgh RFC. Kick-off is at 1pm.