Andover 107 Alton 3
Oakwood sponsored Andover ran riot at the Goodship Ground last Saturday recording the highest ever score by an Andover first fifteen in the club’s history.
Seventeen unanswered tries and eleven conversions from the boot of Rich Rettalick pulverised a shell shocked visiting team who fought hard but simply had no answer to a rampant Andover.
Andover have been threatening something like this all season and after last week’s horror show on the Isle of Wight someone had to pay.
Andover welcomed back from injury Marc Wilding, Tom Waite, Niko Rowe and Rettalick for this one and the difference they made was obvious from the start.
From first minute to last Andover dominated in every department, destroying the visitors scrum with a powerful display, ruling the lineout and playing some fantastic rugby with ball in hand.
A large noisy home crowd were treated to a feast as Simon Preece’s first and last minute tries provided the crust for a filling made of every kind of delicacy.
There were pushover tries, lineout steals, powerful rucks and to wash it all down some real champagne rugby.
Wilding helped himself to a fine hat trick, Sam Froggett grabbed a brace and there were solo efforts for Waite, Alex Hibidge, Aaron Hatcher, Nic Reed, Dave Catt and a very popular effort from prop Sam Earle.
The enigmatic Jack Stott took the biggest slice of the pie though, adding to his early effort with three further lovely scores after switching to the wing.
All in all a great day for Andover in which Paul Tuinsakea and Martin Smiles vied for man of the match with Wilding, all three playing some running rugby that was at times breath taking.
Afterwards coach Andy Waite said, “This was a great day for us and we should enjoy every minute. I need these lads to bottle this feeling and take it to every game to try and get the consistency that will get us out of this league.”
“We have a tough away game against Solent University next week who are top the league and we will need to be this good again.”
“We were able to use the bench to rest players like Andy Franklin today so hopefully we will be all guns blazing.”