Harps performance bang on again in super Amersham win
PUBLISHED: 10:21 17 October 2019
The signs that Harpenden are finally finding their feet in the higher division continued as yet another excellent performance brought a second successive win - this one a 30-15 success at home to Amersham & Chiltern.
The Redbourn Lane-based rugby club were elevated to London One North last season but started the season with just one win from the opening four games.
However, they are now up to seventh and just two places below Southend Saxons who they visit on Saturday.
The turnaround in fortunes continued almost from the first minute against the Buckinghamshire side.
Tom Sweeney gave Harps the lead on five minutes with a penalty before adding a second five minutes later.
The lead was halved by Nat Hocking on 23 minutes and with both defences holding firm, the prospect of a single try seemed remote for a long time.
When the breakthrough did come, it must have arrived on a bus as Harpenden managed two scores in the last two minutes of the half.
First Matt Deane bagged a sweet try following a great break by Tom Stagg and almost immediately after Conor McClean kicked a loose ball forward before winning the race to touch down under the posts.
Sweeney converted both to give Harpenden a healthy 20-3 lead at half-time.
Amersham kept fighting though and were rewarded with a try on 55 minutes when their Kiwi prop Lachlan Collier popped up on the left wing to score.
Sweeney edged the hosts further ahead with a third penalty on 61 minutes but it took until 72 minutes for them to breach the away side's defences, thanks to a try from replacement scrum-half Henry Simcott who had come on for the injured Fred Gulliford.
Sweeney duly converted.
The one disappointment of the day was they couldn't get a fourth try and a bonus point and the final score actually went to Amersham, Lloyd Anderson getting it shortly before the final whistle.
Skipper Oli Lacey said: "I'm really happy with the result. Once again it was our defence that won us the game because we were under a lot of pressure.
"The only disappointment was letting them back into the game in the final minutes. This area of our game is something that we'll be working on ahead of the trip to Southend."