County capitalise on Hawick weakness

Hawick 16

Stirling County 34

A delayed start, due to their bus breaking down en route, didn’t seem to affect the performance of Stirling County, who ultimately played a weak Hawick side off the park, writes Fiona Scott.

The absence of several key players didn’t help the home side, who struggled up front against the bigger, more experienced Stirling pack.

Fraser Lyle ran over the Hawick line to touch down after only two minutes, with Johnny Hope converting, before a spell of pressure from the hosts allowed Ali Weir to convert a penalty.

Stirling struck back immediately with another try from Lyle, converted by Hope, but this time Hawick’s reply came equally fast, with Joaquin Dominguez being bundled over beneath a pile of green shirts. Hope slotted a penalty before converting a penalty try, following another spell of pressure on the Hawick line, to make the half-time score Hawick 8 Stirling County 24.

Within 10 minutes of the restart, Hawick had narrowed the gap to eight points with a Weir penalty and a Rory Hutton try, but it was the visitors who finished the stronger.

Hope added a second penalty and, after what seemed a very long afternoon for the Hawick team and their supporters, the death knell finally sounded with around five minutes remaining.

Stirling won a penalty and, with the try bonus in sight, opted to kick for touch and, following a successful set-piece, replacement Ali Price ran round to touch down at the posts, a smooth initiation for newly appointed kicker Alex Black.