Bears stand up to Oldham
Bears stand up to Oldham
Oldham RLFC 34 Coventry Bears 18
Coventry Bears were in a confident mood after last week's home win against Workington, as they headed up the M6 to Oldham on the outskirts of Manchester.
They faced an Oldham side seriously challenging for promotion this season, and apart from a short spell towards the end of the first half, they were the equal of the long established and highly fancied Northern side.
The game started with both sides very much equal for the first twenty minutes, with each team attacking, defending, and making errors in equal numbers.
Oldham's breakthrough came after 21 mi items as Hewitt scored the first of the afternoon, and the conversion made it 6-0.
Langtree crossed over for the home side five minutes later, but at 12-0 down, the Bears looked far from finished.
But then came what proved to be the killer punches in the guise of two tries in the last three minutes of the first half, another from Langtree and one from Wilkinson to give the home side a seemingly unassailable 22-0 lead in which they had fought off some good play from the likes of Kareem Williams and Reece Rance.
There was a lot needed from the Bears in the second half to prevent a heavy defeat, but their determination was soon evident.
On 49 minutes, Sam Davis set up Kam Pearce Paul for the Bears first try.
Oldham needed to regain their grip, and this was accomplished by Bridge's try six minutes later.
But the Bears were determined to get back into the game, and Sam Davis, the Bears' man of the match took the ball from well inside the Bears half before passing to Elliot Hall who crashed over the line.
Oldham's Hawkyer helped his team pull away again in the seventieth minute, but still the Bears fought back, with Sam Davis getting one for himself, and a third for the Bears in the second half against the two scored by the home side.
Nick Newman added two points for each try to add to his season's tally.
However, winning the second half wasn't enough to cancel out the damage done in the dying minutes of the first half.
The Oldham fans sportingly cheered the Bears off the pitch as valiant and worthy opponents.
The task for the Bears now is to carry the grit and determination shown into next Sunday's home game against North Wales Crusaders who they will face at Broadstreet RFC this Sunday 26th May.
Bears Tom Tsang comments after Oldham;
“It's really mixed feelings after today's game. One the one hand it's an awful feeling any time we lose, especially when so much effort and energy was invested in the performance. But on the other hand I'm immensely proud of the fight and endeavour my team put in.
The scoreline was 0-0 after 27 minutes, and we ended up winning the second half 12 points to 18. But we were undone by a 13 minute lapse before halftime where Oldham scored 4 quick tries.
At 22-0 at half time we were staring down the barrel so to keep plugging away and come back into the match in the second half was encouraging.
We also created many more chances than we were able to finish off and but for a little bounce of the ball here and there, the result today could have been very different.
We matured as a team today and should now go into the next phase of the season very confident of being able to mix it with any team in the competition.”