Chown try lights up another terrific all-round show from Sidmouth U18 girls
- Credit: Archant
Sidmouth Under-18 girls were in Devon Cup action when they travelled to Cullompton where they suffered a defeat, but not before they had given another thoroughly good account of themselves.
This Sidmouth team are a young group who often find themselves playing against players who are a couple of years older than them and on this occasion, the experience and size of the home side paid dividends for them.
With both teams limited on numbers a 10-a-side match was plated ands this helped towards what was an exciting contest though one that was certainly tiring for players on both teams!
Sidmouth made a bright start and there were powerful runs from Emily Cozens and Amber Coombes as both teams looked to play on the front foot.
Sidmouth's hopes were dealt a blow when they lost the services of the influential Hannah Rugg to a suspected concussion, which meant the match went to uncontested scrums. This also proved a set back for Sidmouth for, prior to the injury, they were enjoying plenty of success at the scrum with hooker Abi French causing the Cully front row a host of problems with her quick feet.
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The home team broke the deadlock and scored a second try soon after. Sidmouth hit back and the
centre partnership of Evie Trafford and Hattie Tremlett made good ground on a number of occasions, but were thwarted each time by excellent Cully defence.
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Sidmouth continued to press and Bella Breen, who made some lung-bursting runs, sidestepped her way to within inches of the line when she was held up.
Midway through the first half, the hailstorm that caused the Exeter Chiefs players to leave the Sandy Park pitch just down the M5 motorway, struck Stafford Park, Cullompton, but play continued, allowing the girls to show just what strong stuff they are made of!
The Sidmouth cause was boosted by the half-time arrival of Esme Bagwell, who was quickly into the thick of the action making some piercing runs and making her presence felt with some crunching tackles!
The Bagwell contribution lifted a Sidmouth team labouring with injuries and Cleo Turley became a major influence on proceedings with her infectious hard work and commitment.
Sidmouth's best moment in the second half came through the half back pairing of Lucy Tanner and Bex Fallows who linked well to release the elusive Lauren Chown from a position deep in Sidmouth territory before setting off on a mazy run that took her through countless challenges before crossing the whitewash for a superb try.
The score stung the hosts into a response and they increased the tempo of their game to add further tires and win the game.
However, the final result does not reflect the extreme contribution that Sidmouth gave to the game. The team can certainly come out of this particular contest with their heads held mighty high.
They have a fantastic team spirit, great work ethic and are clearly a terrific group for the coaching staff to work with.