UCS Old Boys triumph again to leapfrog Stevenage Town

Dan Stewart (centre) in action for UCS Old Boys. Pic: Nick Cook/UCS Old Boys RFC

Dan Stewart (centre) in action for UCS Old Boys. Pic: Nick Cook/UCS Old Boys RFC - Credit: Archant

UCS Old Boys have recorded back-to-back wins and leapfrogged Stevenage Town in the London North-West Division Three table after beating them 19-14 on Saturday.

The only fixture in the league was played at Hendon RFC, and Dan Stewart kicked four penalties before a second-half try from Henry Walton as UCS moved up to seventh place.

The Old Boys managed the game well on a muddy pitch in the first half, with tactical kicking from the half-back pairing of Stewart and David O’Dwyer being combined with a dominant scrum, while James May was a towering presence in the line-out, stopping Stevenage from clearing their lines.

Those factors kept UCS in their opponents’ 22 for long periods and Stewart kicked them into a six-point lead at the interval.

The visitors got in behind the Old Boys after the break but it produced one of the moments of the season as Dan Hastings scythed down the marauding Stevenage runner inches short of the line – and a double hit in midfield then led to a knock-on and a turnover as UCS survived.

They went on to extend their lead to 12-0 as Stewart slotted two more penalties between the sticks, but a lapse in concentration allowed the away team to break, get over the line and narrow the gap to 12-7.

The Old Boys rallied and their dominance in the scrum paid off as Walton scored with a simple pick and drive, restoring the 12-point advantage.

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But they were forced onto the back foot again and, although Tom Loughnan exemplified the effort in defence, Stevenage broke through to make it 19-14 with 10 minutes to play and set up a nervy finish.

Stewart missed a penalty which could have eased the tension, but UCS were not about the throw the game away and club stalwart Dan Chapman stood tall as they held on until the final whistle.

The Old Boys’ Under-21s will face UCS school’s first XV on Saturday before the club’s senior side host Datchworth in the league.