Southam 31 Alcester 20
Warwickshire Shield first round
ALCESTER exited the Warwickshire Shield at the first hurdle on Saturday as they were beaten by higher ranked hosts Southam.
However, there was no disgrace in defeat for Alcester, who open their Midlands Three West (South) campaign at home to Woodrush on Saturday.
The Alcester pack made a good start to the game, with Lee Avery-Sherwood putting in some big tackles which even made the supporters shudder and Josh O’Connor showing his upper body strength by handing off several defenders.
However, Alcester’s poor discipline meant Southam were awarded two penalties in ten minutes, both being slotted over to give the hosts a 6-0 lead.
Dan Marcus continued to prove what a good asset to the team he is going to be this season when he scored Alcester’s first try and Jamie Harland converted to give the visitors a one-point lead.
The hosts hit back though and scored two more tries before half time to give them a comfortable 18-7 lead after 40 minutes.
Harland started the scoring in the second half with a penalty but Southam were also awarded one minutes later which they scored to make it 21-10.
Two more tries came from both teams in the second half, with Marcus scoring his second and Kyran Flynn adding to the scoreboard for Alcester.
Despite the loss, Alcester’s coaches and players were pleased with their performance against a higher league side with a few key players missing from their squad, filling them with confidence ahead of their league opener.
ALCESTER 2nds were beaten 41-19 by visitors Old Halesonians 3rds after a late cry-off from league opposition Old Laurentians.
Alcester were playing with 14 men, including a borrowed player from their opposition and two debutants – Chris Cox and Richard New – who had never played a game of contact rugby before.
The visitors, whose first team play three leagues above Alcester, scored two early tries from free-flowing passing through the hands.
After 20 minutes Alcester came more into the game and Alistair Hooper scored between the posts from a set scrum.
However, Old Halesonians took advantage of the extra man and were able to score several tries running up the hill.
After a solid period of rugby, the borrowed player scored against his own team before Scott McGee rounded off Alcester’s points with a try of his own, showing his incredibly quick pace to outrun the defenders.
Oli Morrison converted two of the tries, concluding a good Alcester effort against a stronger side.