Eagles show fight in league defeat
Captain praises the team’s determination
Shire (black and white) battled well but lost out at Newton Stewart. Pic: Suzanne Rennie
last two matches is an indication that we aren’t far away.”
An improved performance in Ayrshire was essential for Shire following their trouncing against Gordonians in week one.
Despite coming off the synthetic pitch falling to a disappointing defeat, the Eagles fought to the final whistle, giving
the coaching team plenty to be optimistic about.
Hosts Newton Stewart started brightly with their direct and powerful running causing all sorts of problems for the Perth defence.
After 15 minutes, they had established a 12-point lead through two tries and a conversion.
Shire then enjoyed much of the possession and territory, having their hard work rewarded as Scott Alcorn raced around the home defence to dot down between the posts. But more weak tackling allowed Newton Stewart to add another try before the break.
Battling Shire then edged up to the opposition 22 and won a penalty, where the deficit was reduced as Jonny Armitt slotted the three points to add to his conversion, leaving the half time score 17-10 in the hosts’ favour.
The second half continued to be played at a frenetic pace as both teams sought to control the encounter.
Newton Stewart extended their lead with two more well-worked scores, but Shire continued to battle. Callum Croughan barged over the line to claim his first try for the Eagles following a period of concerted pressure with the score moving to 27-17 after Armitt added the extras.
The North Inch men sensed the chance of wrestling the win off their hosts, but further leaks in the defence allowed Newton Stewart to notch up their sixth try of the game and put the result beyond doubt.
The closing stages saw the Shire win numerous penalties and put pressure on the home line, but too many chances were spurned through inaccurate passing or loose carrying of the ball as they desperately tried for a consolation try.
Next up for Shire is a home clash with Ardrossan Academicals on Saturday afternoon and Pattinson says the squad is up for the challenge.
He explained: “They’ve just come down to this league after many years at a higher level, winning one handsomely, but also losing heavily to a decent side.
“This result will depend on who wants it more and who can take their chances. We’re looking forward to the challenge.”