Ten-try blitz gives St Mary's the spoils
ST MARY's Ladies roared to a third straight victory in South West North Two, following a ten-try master class against a spirited Gordano Sharks side at Northwood Park.
Try doubles from No 8 Katie Sully, pictured, wing Billi Staite, centre Miriam Soteriou and fly-half Lucy Bowering, plus touchdowns from replacement wing Amber Daum and lock Bridget Sanger, and five conversions from Lisa McCorrmick (2), and Becky Durham (3) secured the spoils for the Saints.
Mary's dominated possession throughout the contest, but were made to work for every point by the Sharks, who tackled themselves to a standstill and battled bravely until the last play of the game.
Mary's front-five power laid the platform for their back-row trio of Sully, Laura Mahoney and Lisa Yip to run riot in the loose.
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On this evidence, Saints look odds-on to win the league title, but head coach Neil Ward is not getting carried away. Saints scored five unanswered tries in each half, and were convincing winners, but Ward believes that there is still plenty of room for improvement.
He said: "You have to be pleased with a ten-tries to nil victory. There were some really good things going on out there and, from that perspective – I'm really happy. But we bombed a few chances, and some of our execution was not as good as it should have been – and the girls would agree with me on that.
"We've spent the last few seasons on the other side of that scoreline, but the girls have stuck together, worked hard, and turned things around – but we're not the finished article. We've had three big wins, but we need to keep our feet on the ground and guard against complacency."
Gordano coach Steve Gazzard said: "I'm really please with the way our girls stuck at it today. This is a new team, and the girls are learning all the time. We played against a well-drilled side today, and we were always going to be up against it. But we learned some valuable lesson today, which will make us a better side."
Wing Sally Tuson scored the only try during Bristol Ladies 24-5 reverse at London Wasps Ladies. The visitors, trailing 7-5, were well in the contest at the interval, with breakaway trio Claire Molloy, Izzy Noel-Smith and Wales skipper Rachel Taylor in fine form.
But the home side pulled clear in the second half to score 17 unanswered points. Bristol Ladies, who have now dropped down to fifth in the RFU Premiership table, welcome bottom side Thurrock Ladies to the Portway on Sunday. (2pm).
Meanwhile, England Women's head coach Gary Street has named his squad ahead of the autumn internationals, which includes four members of the Bristol club. Prop Kate Newton, flanker Izzy Noel-Smith, centre Amber Reed and wing Sally Tuson all make the squad.