Stirling thumped as Wright lauds ‘almost perfect’ Hawks

Hawks head coach Peter Wright was understandably bullish after his team thumped their visitors with a considerable degree of comfort. Indeed, the final score gave Stirling a degree of respectability they scarcely deserved: with ten minutes left they trailed 36-5 and looked a disorganised and indisciplined lot.

“We played an almost perfect 65 minutes,” said Wright. “We played the game at pace and our skills set was good. We scored some good tries and put a lot of pressure on Stirling. Pleasing for us as well is that five of our guys were playing in the first XV for the first time.”

The platform for the win was provided by Tom Steven, who notched four tries, romping in with a first-half hat-trick that knocked the stuffing out of County. With a further first-half score by Ross Miller, Hawks had guaranteed a bonus point before the break. Stirling’s only counter was a touchdown by Stuart Edwards.

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Steven rubbed salt into County’s wounds by adding his fourth immediately after the interval, before Kerr Gossman ensured the lead was unassailable. Peter Jericevich bagged three conversions to complete Hawks’ scoring. County improved in the last 15 minutes, but despite tries from Ben Addison, Alex Moffat and Ross Aitken, the second converted by Brian Archibald, it was always going to be too little, too late.

If Hawks will be deservedly chuffed, County will be despondent. Stirling’s head coach, Eddie Pollock, was nothing if not honest afterwards. “I thought we were awful,” he said. “Absolutely terrible. We were naive in the extreme.”

Scorers: Hawks: tries, Steven (4), Miller, K Gossman; cons, Jericevich (3). County: tries, Edwards, Addison, Moffat, Aitken; con, Archibald.

Glasgow Hawks: Gossman, Steven, Kelbrick, Preece, Wright, Martin, Jericevich, Findlay, Milligan, Lohar, McKay, Ferguson, Francis, Hamilton, Miller. Subs: Williamson, MacFarlane, Kirkland, Robinson, Gossman.

Stirling County: Addison, Lindsay, Gilmour, Archibald, Aitken, Edwards, Kennedy, Raby, Moffat, Hutton, McAlpine, Deacons, Swindall, Barsanti.Subs: Black, Ashe, Simpson, Bolan, Boswell.

Referee: J Matthew.