ACADEMY: St Helens 16-34 Widnes Vikings

ACADEMY: St Helens 16-34 Widnes Vikings

9th July 2018

The unbeaten run stretched to eight, as Widnes Vikings swept aside league leaders St Helens with a 34-16 victory at the Totally Wicked Stadium. The defeat was only the home side's third of the entire year.

Saints came out the blocks quickly, and were soon on the attack and forced a goal line drop out, but Widnes survived and from defence kicked deep. From the kick the St Helens full back, instead of letting the ball roll into touch, caught the ball and couldn't stop himself going over the line. From the resulting scrum a sweeping movement across the field saw Olly Brookes score in the corner to make it 0-4.

Five minutes later, Ben Davies produced a peach of a pass for Sam Walters and the second rower raced over under the posts. Sam Freeman added the conversion.  

Saints hit back immediately when Matthew Foster scored from close range, and with Callum Hazzard adding the extras, it was 6-10.  

Widnes reacted to the Saints try by scoring again and this time it was the prolific Jayden Hatton touching down for the away side. Freeman again converted the try.

Then came the try of the game as the ball went through several pairs of hands and Freeman finished it off in spectacular fashion. He converted his own try and Widnes led 6-22. Despite some intense St Helens pressure before the break there was no further score in the half.

Half-Time: St Helens 6-22 Widnes Vikings

The home side needed to score first to get back in the game and they did just that when a good move saw Jack Welsby score.  Hazzard converted and Saints looked like they had gained some confidence from that score.

However, Widnes produced another good try, moving the ball from left to right with Olly Brookes grabbing his second try when finishing the move in the corner. Sam Freeman landed a magnificent touchline conversion and Widnes had a lead of 12-28.

It looked like Widnes would score again, but when Brookes couldn't control the final pass, Saints went 85 metres upfield only to be halted by a last ditch Freeman tackle. However, they couldn't keep them out and Kevin Brown scored his side's third try. 

 A 12 point lead with 20 minutes left meant that the game was still in the balance and the next score was vital. Chris Wilson skewed his drop goal attempt wide, and gutsy defence from Widnes followed, seeing them force errors from the home side.  

With five minutes left, the try that sealed victory came on a last tackle play. Jake Burns followed up his own grubber kick to race past the St Helens defence to score the last try of the game. Freeman converted to seal the U19s' eighth successive victory.

Full-Time: St Helens 16-34 Widnes Vikings 


St Helens: Kevin Brown, Thomas Nisbet, Cameron Brown, Josh Simm, John Hutchings, Jack Welsby, Ryan Horne, Alex Eckley, Jake Wingfield, Callum Hazzard, Matthew Foster, Sam Royle, Chris Follin. SUBS: Brandon O'Neill, Joseph Sharratt, Kye Siyani, Jorge Lewtas

Tries: Brown, Foster, Welsby     Goals: Hazzard 2/3


Widnes Vikings: Lloyd Roby, Olly Brookes, Jayden Hatton, Billy Glover, Sam Freeman, Ben Davies, Chris Wilson, Owen Farnworth, Jake Burns, Pat McCarroll, Sam Walters, Calum O'Neill, Jarrod O'Connor. SUBS: Bradley Calland, James Rutledge, Liam Walsh, Will Tilleke.


Tries: Brookes 2, Burns, Freeman, Hatton, Walters     Goals: Freeman 5/6


HT   6-22

FT   16-34

Pens  3-10

ACADEMY: St Helens 16-34 Widnes Vikings