Local derby win for Under 15s
- Friday, 24 February 2017
The Under 15s beat Portsmouth 31-17 on Sunday in a potentially tough match made even harder by the fact that they had no substitutes with the squad reduced to just 15 players due to injuries and half term absences.
Portsmouth opened the scoring after just 3 minutes with a drive into the corner.
Gos responded perfectly, the forwards doing their job, securing the ball and getting it out through the backs to Joe O'Mahony who danced his way down the touchline to score a converted try just 60 seconds later.
The next 15 minutes were a hard grind with the team being pushed back into their 22 red zone.
A handling error gave Portsmouth a five metre scrum which they capitalised on, taking it over for their second of the match.
Six minutes later Gosport & Fareham responded with some excellent support play, allowing Alex Stepnitz to drive forward, just managing to get the ball over the line. Harvey Field added the U15's third try of the half beneath the posts right on the half time whistle. The three tries were all converted to give G&F a half time lead of 21-12.
The second half continued in the same vein; a lot of hard, physical work by the forwards, good handling through the backs but a solid defence on both sides.
Ten minutes into the second half and a quickly taken penalty from a high tackle saw the ball floated out to the wing into Ollie Walker's hands. The initial hit from the Portsmouth defence looked to have stopped him, but backup arrived and he was bundled over the line for G&Fs fourth try.
Gos settled down into another period of physical play, but the handling errors were starting to creep in.
A bit of confusion on the half way line saw Portsmouth take a quick penalty, running it down the pitch for a third try.
Gos knew the game wasn't over and Walker finished off the scoring, taking the ball down the blindside after a turnover in the ruck from 10m out.
Manager Martin Burnett commented afterwards "There was some excellent improvement in ball handling and support play all round. Well done to the pack, winning several against the head despite being at a noticeable size disadvantage".