TWO points gained and two points lost was the stark truth at the end of a tense match that produced a dramatic conclusion, writes Alan Lorimer.
Leading 17-10 after an impressive second-half peformance, Hawick looked poised to add a try in injury time. But, bizarrely, it was Hawks who ended up scoring the game’s final points from a break-out near their own line, a speculative kick ahead and a catastrophic failure by Hawick to hoof the ball over the touchline.
In the subsequent chaos on a rain-soaked Mansfield pitch churned up by a midweek game, the Clydesiders hacked the ball down the park for wing Gavin Lowe to win the race for the touchdown, full back James Gormley’s conversion ensuring a draw was the final outcome.
“It was just a bit of stupidity”, said a bitterly-disappointed Hawick coach, Phil Leck.
“And a shame, too, because we played some good stuff. We should have gone down on the ball, recycled it and then kicked it out.”
Hawks had scored a scrappy try in the first half by Gormley from a similar failure by Hawick to deal with ball in mendacious mud, Mike Adamson’s touchline conversion, which subsequently proved to be the Glasgow side’s vital points, giving Hawks a 7-3 lead at the break. Neil Renwick slotted a penalty.
That scoreline became 10-3 with a Mike Adamson penalty kick. But thereafter the Teries assumed control, scoring through Bruce McNeil and then adding a try by Renwick from mud-defying running and handling of the highest order involving James Johnstone, Scott Mclead and then Renwick.
Both tries were converted by Renwick, for a 17-10 lead, and with full-time approaching it seemed that Hawick had four championship points.
Sadly for the Mansfield Park fans, Hawks threw a final spanner in the home works to leave the Greens stunned at losing two vital points.