Stowmarket 10, Holt 40
Holt recorded their biggest win of the season in London 2NE on Saturday to complete a double over struggling Stowmarket.
From the start, Holt took the game to their opponents on a heavy pitch and youngster Tom Jackson finished off a break by Young to score a try, with the same player adding the points. This was the start Holt needed after a certain amount of indecision in recent games. Having survived another attack by the home sideYoung was on target with a penalty after 10 minutes to increase the lead to 0-10.
After 25 minutes the visitors lost a player to the sin bin for an offence and this led to the hosts taking advantage of the one man overlap to score an unconverted try two minutes later. Holt had their chances to increase their lead but had to wait until the dying moments of the half before scoring again when Woods touched down following a driving scrum close to the goal line. The conversion was just off target but Holt went into the break with a 5-15 lead and needing to maintain the pressure in the second half.
Holt did just this from the start and in the first minute won a scrum in Stowmarket's half for Jarry-Ryan to finish off the move with an unconverted try, increasing the lead to 5-20. This early setback inspired the hosts to test Holt's defence and they were duly rewarded after 10 minutes when, following a midfield muddle, they scored an unconverted try in the corner to reduce the deficit to 10-20.
Both sides again were looking for the breakthrough and it was Holt, following a driving maul, who scored a try through Hill and with Young adding the points a bonus point was in the bag as well.
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Holt were firmly in the driving seat and with the home side falling foul of the referee, they had two players sin binned in quick succession. This led to a penalty try being awarded after desperate measures to stop a try which probably would have been scored and with the conversion by Young a formality, the lead now stood at 10-34 with 14 minutes still to play.
The hosts then lost another player to the bin and were still two players short, as the earlier miscreant had come back on.
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Holt maintained the pressure and although no further tries were forthcoming, Young was on target with two penalties in the last five minutes.
Despite some periods of play being rather scrappy Holt had won back their self-belief to stay fifth in the table with eight wins out of 12. One very rewarding aspect was the fact Holt had four players aged 20 or under in the team, a very good sign for the future. Next Saturday Ipswich, who are second in the table, are the visitors to High Kelling.
The Owls and A XV both won their Merit Table matches against Wisbech and Southwold, 68-0 and 32-22 respectively.