Purring Panthers sit top of the pile

South Wales Guardian: MAKING A SPLASH: Penybanc Panthers climbed to top of Pool C in the Super Cup with victory over Haverfordwest. MAKING A SPLASH: Penybanc Panthers climbed to top of Pool C in the Super Cup with victory over Haverfordwest.

Super Cup Pool C

Haverfordwest Ladies 19 Penybanc Panthers 31

Having lost to Haverfordwest twice in the league, the young Panthers travelled west in determined mood with both sides unbeaten in the Super Cup.

The Panthers started full of intent with some huge early hits - particularly from the impressive centre pairing of Holly Roderick and Brittony Price, but it was the home team who struck points first with a penalty.

However, the Panthers hit back immediately as Roderick brushed aside the home defence to scamper 50 metres and score under the post. Scrum-half Catrin Rees converted.

Haverfordwest repeatedly gained good field position but the tempo and aggression of the visitors tackling ensured they could only muster a drop-goal for their efforts.

The well-drilled Panthers were able to show a mix of power and guile as strong running from Lowri Chapman and Laura Powell up front eventually created the gaps for a swift backs movement to end with Price show her skills to evade several tackles and score. Rees converted.

With the Panthers front eight dominant, they were able to boss every scrum with full credit going to schoolgirls Danielle Jenkins and Kirsty Hopkins. Amy Jenkins – playing her first game at prop – also gave an excellent performance.

Fabiana O’Callahan crashed over for a well-worked try with the rampant Panthers purring before a superb turnover by Angharad Edwards released Roderick who again powered over for a brilliant individual try. Rees added the extras.

With a bonus point secure, the Panthers powered their way to a 25-6 half-time lead.

Despite playing up the slope after the break, the Panthers soon found their rhythm again with debutant Chloe Davies impressing while Alana Woodford controlled proceedings with boot and pass.

Haverfordwest opted for uncontested scrums as the match wore on, upsetting the Panthers’ momentum, but Price was able to double her tally before the hosts clawed by two late tries, but it was far too little, far too late.

The bonus-point victory ensured the Panthers now sit top of Pool C with a point lead over Haverfordwest.

Sunday sees Penybanc host Nantyffyllon in their final home game of the pool.

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