Grangemouth 31 Hillfoots 22: Stags battle to victory

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.
Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

Grangemouth fought hard for this victory against a good Hillfoots side and moved third in the league.

The pack was under pressure at times but the backs always looked dangerous and with a bit more composure would have added further scores.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

The home side made a positive start and opened the scoring after just four minutes. A charge down by McNiff pinned the visitors back in their 22. From a scrum the ball was moved to the centre where Dempsey side stepped his man to run in under the posts. Shannon added he extras.

Hillfoots hit back and opened their account on 10 minutes. The initial attack down the left was halted at the 22. The ball was then moved wide to the right and with the home defenders sucked in the overlap was created for a score in the corner. The conversion attempt was wide. Grangemouth hit back and increased their lead with a Shannon penalty a few minutes later. The Stags added their second try on 20 minutes.

Dempsey made the initial break before Kerry had a rumble into the Foots 22. The ball was switched back to the blindside and this time Allan stepped inside his man to score under the posts. Shannon slotted the simple kick.

Grangemouth pressed for further scores. The forwards had a series of drives before the ball was moved wide where McLay was bundled into touch close to the line. However the pressure was not turned into points and it was the visitors who scored next. They attacked from deep to take play up to the Stags 22. The ball was moved along the line to create the space for the winger to dive in at the

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

corner. Once again the conversion was unsuccessful. HT Stags 17 Hillfoots 10.

The third quarter was a tense affair with neither side creating any clear chances. Kerry had a couple of runs for the Stags but the final passes failed to stick allowing Hillfoots to clear. Finally on 65 minutes the Stags did turn pressure into points. They pinned the visitors in their 22 and when the ball was moved wide Allan skipped round his man to run in for his second try.

Shannon landed the difficult conversion.

The bonus point try followed soon after.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

Hillfoots kicked the ball dead from the kick off and this allowed the Stags an attacking platform on halfway. The pack made the initial metres to suck in defenders before the ball was moved to the right for Allan to race down the line and complete his hat trick. Shannon maintained his 100% kicking record with the conversion. Hillfoots refused to give up and closed the game with two further trys to earn a try scoring bonus point. First the pack pushed a Grangemouth scrum back to leave a simple pick up and score for the number 8. Then a cross kick bounced nicely for the winger to jump and collect the ball for the score. The first conversion was on target but the second was wide.

This week Grangemouth are again heading up the A90 as they travel to the Granite City to take on Aberdeen Wanderers. KO is 3pm.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.

Grangemouth Stags v Hillfoots. Pic by Alan Murray.