Hyland stars as Honiton bag clean-sheet win over Tavistock

PUBLISHED: 12:34 07 December 2017 | UPDATED: 12:34 07 December 2017

Action from the Honiton 1st XV victory over Plymstock Albion Oaks

Action from the Honiton 1st XV victory over Plymstock Albion Oaks

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Honiton claimed a superb clean-sheet victory as they defeated Tavistock for the second time in three weeks, beating the Moorlanders 34-0 to maintain their pursuit of the top three in the Tribute Cornwall and Devon League table, writes Jerry Rice.

Tavistock pitched up at Allhallows with a changed side to the one that the Lacemen had beaten in the recent cup tie.

In front of what was an impressive turnout of support at Allhallows, the visitors elected to play against the infamous slope and they started well. Indeed, such was their early influence on proceedings that Honiton really saw little of the ball and it was just tackle after tackle as they defended their territory.

However, once the initial storm was ‘weathered’, Honiton made a rare visit to the visitors’ 22 and, by being patient with the phases, it was player-coach Nathan Hannay, who crashed over for the first score of the game.

Back came the visitors with Honiton forced to defend well once again before another slick break-out saw the ball delivered to the backs prior to Ollie Hyland charging over from 20 metres out. Ollie Cave slotted the conversion and, albeit against the run of play, the Lacemen were 14 points up after just two visits to the Tavistock 22!

A Cave penalty added three more points and the half-time break arrived with Honiton holding a 17-0 lead.

The second half was no less competitive with both sides going hammer and tongs at each other.

However, as Tavistock began to tire, Honiton, now with more possession, started to make inroads with the ball and it was from another well-worked play that Cave managed to apply a clinical finish out wide and he converted his own try with a terrific kick to extend the home advantage to 24-0.

The Lacemen began to serve up some superb passages of play, none more so impressive than when Josh Rice broke from deep before finding Hannay, who slipped the ball to Nick Guilbert. The ball was then moved to Ben Kidson, but he was just hauled down short, just missing out on what would have been a memorable try.

Kidson was not to be denied though and he crossed and again Cave made light work of a difficult conversion out wide to complete the scoring.

This was a great game to watch and to be fair the score line did not reflect the part Tavistock played in it.

Honiton were certainly worth the win and whilst not complaining, as they did played very well, there were still dropped balls and forward passes so there is still room for improvement as well.

Once again the victory was built on a great defence, especially in the first half, Adam Thompson controlled the game well at 10, the senior forwards were as impressive as ever and the young guard in the pack also put in a good shift as well.

There was a good debut for Wesley Keywood at the back, but it was Ollie Hyland who won the Man of the Match award as he was robust throughout.

This Saturday (December 9), the Lacemen travel to Torrington and the game marks the halfway stage of the league season.

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