There was a palpable sense of relief from County head coach Graeme Young after his side arrested a poor run of form with a gritty performance.
Stirling County 23-20 Glasgow Hawks
Scorers: Stirling County – Tries: Huhes, McFarlane, Addison. Con: Archibald. Pens: Archibald (2). Glasgow Hawks – Tries: Adamson, McPherson. Cons: Adamson (2). Pens: Adamson (2).
“That was much better,” he said after cessation of hostilities. “Our guys worked for each other, which I was really pleased about. We had some big changes in personnel and that always causes disruption. Discipline let us down a couple of times with conceding penalties we didn’t need to give away but, overall, I’m really pleased.”
It was, indeed, a much improved showing from Stirling, with tries from Rory Hughes, A J McFarlane and Ben Addison, the first converted by Brian Archibald, who also added two penalties. That was enough to see off Hawks. The Glasgow side had Mike Adamson to thank for all their points, other than a consolation try deep into injury time by Haddon McPherson that secured a losing bonus point.
There had been muttering among some sections of the crowd about County having three pros in their ranks but that cut no mustard with Hawks coach Jamie Dempsey. “I thought the pros added to the game,” he said. “It helped our boys raise their standard. It’s a great learning opportunity for our players.”
Dempsey was clearly despondent at only taking the bonus point. “We put a lot into that. We thoroughly deserved at least a point and could have got more but they showed a slot of nous in closing out the game.”
Stirling County: Murchie; Addison, Ascarate, Archibald, Hughes; Edwards, McFarlane; Bhatti, Moffat, Murray, Larsen, Deacons, Robertson, Swanson, MacDonald. Sub: Kennedy, Burney, Bordill, Barsanti, Weir.
Glasgow Hawks: White; Steven, MacLay, Steele, Beattie; Adamson, McPherson; Findlay, Gillies, Lohoar, Linton, McKay, Kirkland, Miller, Bartoszek. Subs: Kerr, Bachurzewski, Redmayne, Russell, Young.