Derby triumph gets Blues' campaign up and running
THE Blues go into Saturday's RFU Senior Vase clash against Stewarts & Lloyds full of confidence following their derby victory over Lincoln.
Ben Pharaoh's men face a long away trip down to Corby for the cup clash, but will be buoyed by the 22-10 Midlands 3 East (North) win at Springfield Road.
The hosts ran in four tries to Lincoln's two in a thoroughly entertaining game to register a bonus-point victory and get their league campaign up and running.
The impressive Lincoln backs found they had met their match from the very start with ferocious defence after their opening possession.
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However, it was Lincoln that opened the scoring – a quick 22 drop-out from Grimsby was read by the visiting centre, who collected the ball and ran in unopposed. The conversion was missed.
This spurred the hosts on and their fast-flowing game-plan was evident throughout. In fact, Grimsby's opening score was up there with the best.
A superb dummy run from Stuart Saunders and delayed pass from fly-half Pharaoh put winger and man-of-the-match Lewis Newsum into space.
He made impressive yards and found Ash Waterman, who 'fixed' the last defender and fed Jonno Norman to finish off. The conversion was missed but the teams went in at half-time all square.
During the second half, charging runs from the back row trio of Mike Newman, Allan Oliver and Sam Vickers tore holes all over the pitch.
And the front row of Neil Corry, Justyn Hill and Matt Pettiford continually turned the ball over in defence.
Resolute big-hitting from the second row partners of Matt Vincent and Luke Chaplin kept Lincoln on the back foot.
Grimsby had started the second half well and their second try came from Pharaoh as he dummied and crashed his way over the line, ably assisted by superb running from Saunders, again, and Hill. Bradley Watson, celebrating his 18th birthday, slotted the conversion.
Lincoln then put together a fine move to score in the corner, but again the conversion was missed.
The Blues' third try was the best of the day. From a clearance kick, Pettiford gathered and drew his man and fed Pharaoh. He popped to Newsum who raced away and passed wide for Vickers to out-sprint the cover defence.
Grimsby put their visitors under increasing pressure with impressive scrummaging and catch and drives off the line-out.
From such pressure, fine work between substitute Adam Waterman and his brother Ash saw the latter crash over in the corner for the final score.
Lincoln searched for a score to give them a losing bonus point, but the Blues refused to have their line breached.