There were mixed fortunes for Allan Glen’s and Lenzie on their return to rugby action after the festive break.
Glen’s were 52-20 winners over Oban Lorne in their West Division 1 clash, in what was a good considering neither team had played for almost two months.
Seven minutes into the game a dummy and a well timed pass by Thomson sent Low into the corner to score for Glen’s and Thomson added the extra two points.
Not to be outdone Oban’s hooker, Barrett, charged from the halfway line to touch down a try which Jamieson converted. He followed this up a few minutes later with a successful penalty attempt.
Glen’s hit back 15 minutes later when Ekevati forced his way over after some slick work by the backs. Almost immediately Henderson repeated the act for Glen’s after receiving a long pass from Thomson.
A careless pass from Glen’s however allowed Oban’s centre Jenkins to intercept and beat the home defence to the line making a half time score of 19-17.
Until now the sides had been pretty even in territory and work rate. But apart from a penalty for Oban early on, the second half was all Glen’s.
Superior fitness plus a severe pep talk by coach Brian Heneghan gave them the edge. Not that Oban capitulated but they just could not break down a stubborn home defence and could not compete with the skill and pace of the Glen’s backs.
Tries for Glen’s by McKeown, Henderson, Shannon and two by Reilly completed the days scoring.
However Lenzie went down 30-24 in their Division 2 match at Strathendrick.
Despite having a much changed team due to a number of late call offs, Lenzie prodded the home defence early on and looked threatening without getting a score.
The first score was a penalty to Strathendrick for offside and the home side went in front 3-0. Strathendrick were coming into the game and were rewarded again with a good converted try to go 10- 0 up.
Lenzie were very unfortunate to loose influential stand-off McWilliams with a head knock, followed by Mohammad and Fraser in quick succession, which fully tested the Lenzie bench and Coach Le Mar’s creative skills to reshape the team.
Lenzie managed to reduce the deficit when Mckenzie intercepted a loose pass to run in from 40 metres to bring the score to 10-5. But the rest of the half belonged to Strathendrick who stretched their lead at the break to 20-5 against a makeshift and lacklustre visiting team.
Coaches Le Mar and Brown reorganised their troops for the second half and whatever was said appeared to work as Lenzie took control of the set pieces and breakdown, enabling Bryson to make a great break to put Nisbet through for a converted try.
Shortly after this score the visitors were back in the game when McCrae ran clear from 20 metres following an excellent period of pressure and continuity rugby from Lenzie to bring the score to 20-19.
Both sides were now playing for the win and the home side were fortunate to score a converted try against the run of play before Nisbet scored his second try for Lenzie to close the score to 27-24 with 10 minutes remaining.
This exciting encounter’s scoring was completed by a well struck penalty by the home side stand off and whilst Lenzie camped in their opponents 22 for the last five minutes they failed to score through a mixture of good defence and unforced errors.
Credit goes to both sides for a great game and Lenzie will be pleased with their second half performance. Best for Lenzie were Letford, Bryson, Brett, Alex, Nisbet with a special mention to young Hamish McAllister who made his senior debut from the bench and put in a great defensive and passing display throughout the game.
Man of the Match was the outstanding Mckenzie.
This week Lenzie are at home to Waysiders/ Drumpellier while Glen’s are away to East Kilbride, both games kicking opff at 2pm.