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Easy win goes missing. - Australian Rugby league News
globalrugbyleague - Fri, 15 Feb 2008 06:14:00 GMT
Defensive deficiencies took some gloss off the high-scoring affair between the Keighley Kougars and Halifax in round 1 of the Northern Rail Cup.

The two teams scored a total of 18-tries at Cougar Park last weekend to pick up 104-points in the game.

Not that coaches Matt Calland (Fax) or Barry Eaton (Kougars) would be vying to repeat that record again so soon.

While Halifax fans would have been pleased with seeing their team start on top and finish that way, they will certainly want to see them concentrate defensively a lot better against Whitehaven on February 16.

Within seven minutes the away side was up 10-0 thanks to Graham Holroyd and Sean Penkwicz who combined to send in Damian Gibson and James Haley early on.

The hosts responded with tries from Feather and Rayner but then one-way traffic saw the Kougars remain scoreless for the rest of the first-half largely thanks to a not-to-die-for collection of countless errors, penalties and missed tackles.

This helped Fax run away with five unanswered tries to head into the sheds on cruise control with a 40-12 half-time lead.

A crowd of 1,340 in attendance got the shock of their lives in the second half when the Kougars got to within ten-points of the opposition care of three-quick tries including two from Jon Presley.

But possession proved to be the decisive factor in this affair and it was the former Super League squad who were better able to use this to their advantage.

Sean Penkywicz then scored the second hat-trick of the clash and pretty much gave Keighley the last rugby league rites.

Other scores for the Kougars went to former Huddersfield Giants star Paul Smith, Janan Billings, Mick Govin, Richard Varkulis and former Bulls winger Andy Smith

"We go up to Workington next week and they are fierce competitors in National League Two. I'd much rather go there and win 6-4, defending much stronger, than score 40 points versus Halifax and lose,” conceded Kougars coach Barry Eaton.

"It was even more disappointing because we'd concentrated on defence in training over the last two weeks. It looks like we need to do more."

HALIFAX 64: (Gibson, Haley, P.Smith, Penkywicz, Holroyd,, Billings, Govin, Varkulis , A.Smith tries; Holroyd 10/11 goals) def KEIGHLEY 40 (Feather, Rayner , Shickell, Presley (3), Gardner tries; Knight 6/7 goals) Penalties: Halifax 15-7 Referee: Dave Merrick.

Other Northern Rail Cup scores (R2):

Barrow 28-20 Blackpool
Batley 19-18 Dewsbury
Featherstone 40-12 York
Gateshead 58-6 Hunslet
London Skolars 10-26 Celtic Crusaders
Swinton 34-36 Rochdale

Widnes 8-15 Leigh - Read More, Here