Seconds v Southampton A - March 5th 2016

Big come back for seconds

Bath seconds v Southampton A

March 5th 2016

Location - Odd Down Sport Field, Bath

Final Score

Bath 6:5 Southampton

Photos on facebook

The squad

At one stage it looked as if this game would be called off, no recreation ground due to the half marathon and the University pitch was waterlogged. Luckily Odd Down Playing fields (Tuesday training takes place there) were able to accommodate on the rugby pitch. Then at the last moment the Rugby pitch became unavailable, but the new 3G pitch did, so Bath played their first ever full men’s home game on 3G, using portable creases and goals.

 

Akito Jacques in a tangleClearing run from Ben Whitfield

 

Southampton came prepared and up for the game, definitely a different beast to what faced Bath before Xmas. Similarly to Bath they had experience and youth all over the pitch, and crucially the visitors had switched from a zone defence to man on man.

At Face Rory Crouch struggled to dominate his opposite number and Southampton gained a lot of possession, Bath defence though was at full strength, Keeper Ben Hopkins was more than happy with the protection on offer, Paul Bown, Marcus Dunn and Ben Whitfield is an excellent back three, add to that Jack Bateson and Josh Yeoman (now looking more long pole by the day) alternating into LSM and Bath looked solid.

altalt

 

The Southampton possession payed off in the first quarter, Bath didn’t create too many chances, dropping the ball at crucial moments. Southampton manged a brace going into the quarter break 2:0 and in control.

The home side put on more pressure on the ride in the second quarter, but still could not get the break until mid-way through the period, attack pressure on the keeper on the ride caused an overthrow which went straight to Nik Roberts in front of goal, Roberts put the gift away to score his first of 4 goals on the day. With both defences looking more and more solid the game was going to be decided in marginal plays.

 

Neil Smith preys

 

After the half time break the game opened up a little, Neil Smith, who had been refereeing the first half came on at face off and was more successful, Bath’s possession became more controlled, however Southampton continues to threaten when they had the Ball, Bath got one back at the end of a beautiful fast break finished by Roberts, now carrying a replacement stick after snapping his in half checking a defender; This was a short lived comeback as the visitors re-establish the 2 goal lead with a good move through the Bath defence. A solo effort from Neil Smith pegged it back again, but a slip and a long speculative shot from Southampton again put the 2 goal cushion in place, 3:5 at three quarter time.

 

rich Bowen-Ashwin hits the dirtalt

 

The only obvious advantage Bath had on the day was numbers, and in the fourth quarter it began to tell on the visitors, they began to tire, Bath pulled one back with a crease goal from Roberts (stealing a shot by Akito Jacques), a second came with another draw and dump to Roberts, again on the crease to even the scores. Going into the last 5 minutes both teams stepped up the effort, good saves from both keepers just added to the tension.

With a couple of minutes on the clock Akito Jacques charged the defence, rolling two defenders and putting the ball into the net for the winner; Southampton were deflated, Bath stole the game through sheer hard work with a little control in attack. Great win, well deserved.

 

 

 

Quarter Scores:

1st quarter Bath 0:2 Southampton

2nd quarter Bath 1:0 Southampton

3rd quarter Bath 2:3 Southampton

4th quarter Bath 3:0 Southampton

Final Score Bath 6:5 Southampton

Scorers

Nik Roberts 4

Neil Smith 1

Akito Jacques 1

Referees

Mark Buckland (Panel)

Neil Smith (Bath)

Owen Edwards (Bath)