Honiton edged out by Paignton

PUBLISHED: 15:16 06 January 2015

Honiton kicked off the second part of the season with a home game against Paignton who are a side who sit a couple of positions higher than them in the league and duly won a close contest 15-12, writes Roger Dance.

Unfortunately for Honiton a last minute drop once again disrupted the side’s pre-match preparations, but with a little re-jigging the line up was adjusted just in time for the kick off.

Conditions would best be described as sticky and playing against the slope Honiton started brightly and using the advantage of a stiff breeze they were able to pin the visitors back with sensible field kicks. However, the visitors soaked up the pressure and defended well and they were also patient with their phases of play as they tried to get out of their half.

It was stalemate until 20 minutes on the clock when a good passage of play saw the visitors get in behind Honiton’s defence and a ball spun wide was caught and touched down for an unconverted try. Both sides went close and for Honiton a good break in the final seconds of the half by the returning Richard Hodges should have been rewarded with a try, but the final pass went to ground and the half finished with the visitors’ five points to the good.

Honiton started brightly in the second half and from a scrum on the halfway line the blind side break from Rice released Witton and Webber and the final pass saw full back Philip Cook cross under the sticks unopposed for a well worked converted try.

Honiton looked to be on top and they got into the red zone again straight away, but self inflicted errors saw the visitors get out of the strangle hold and they took full advantage to break out and score out wide. The Lacemen were then guilty of dropping heads, and, on the thirty-minute mark Paignton scored again to go 15-7 up. Honiton dug deep and did finish the game strongly and on the final whistle they were reward with a bonus point score that was dotted down by Robert Price.

The 15-12 score line was probably just about a fair result in a game that could have gone either way. Honiton did finish with tails up and maybe if the game had gone on a little longer they could have sneaked a win and there was also obvious relief from the visitors when the final whistle went. Once again a lot of endeavour and in parts a good performance from the side just the wrong result.

On Saturday (January 11), it’s the long trip to Penzance and nothing but a positive approach will get a result.

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