Cougars v Altrincham Kersal

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Hope tops try-scoring table across women’s leagues

The Cougars took to the field on Sunday 17th October, with the goal of achieving their first win of the season against old rivals Altrincham Kersal. From the first whistle, the Cougars applied pressure and pinned the visitors back in their own 22.

A rushed clearance kick fell to Laura Cunningham who took the high ball well under pressure. The Cougars set the ball up well, and the strong running of inside centre Katie Wigham saw the Cougars cross for the first of their tries.

The next 15 minutes saw the Cougars continue to look dominant, but the Kersal defence kept the Cougars out. The next try came from a quick tap penalty which saw prop Lucy Meadley power over the line from 5m out. This second try settled the Cougars nerves and they began to take control.

With the forwards securing ball well in the scrum, a solid platform was created for the backs, who started to run in the tries. A further try from Wigham (players player) followed by a first half hat-trick from outside centre Julie Hope and a  try from Emily Turner saw the Cougars go in at half time 47-0 up.

The visitors came out strongly in the second half and pinned the Cougars on their try line, but strong and sustained tackling in defence kept Kersal out.  The score remained the same until ten minutes from the end when Hope outpaced the defence for 3 more tries in the final stages of the game, taking her tally to 9 for the season, which makes her the highest try scorer across all the womens leagues. Lisa Ritchie kicked 9 conversions, with one for Simone Lynn to make the final score 75-0.

The game was played in front of match sponsors Dan’s groundworks, maintenance and landscaping and P. L. Gauntlett Accountants Limited. Now 5th in the league, the Cougars hope to use this performance as a springboard for their season. Next week they travel to Olney, in Buckinghamshire, and with the confidence taken from this game hope for another good result.