Bristol Sonics are celebrating a “Super Saturday” after seeing both adult open-age teams notch up valuable wins.
The first team, previously unbeaten in Conference League South, cemented their position at the top of the table after winning away at St Albans 40-6. Bristol Sonics A, the club’s second team, made a great start to the West of England League season, grinding out a tough 26-20 victory over Swindon St George at Avonmouth Old Boys RFC.
Early tries from Dan Evans, Harry Marson and skipper Dom Swann set the Sonics first team on the way to a convincing win at struggling St Albans. The home side briefly rallied to get on the scoresheet in the 32nd minute, but further tries from James Gross and James Raymond helped the Sonics to a comfortable 28-6 half time lead.
Two second half tries from Man Of The Match Will Tobin helped Bristol Sonics A squeeze past Swindon St George at Barrack’s Lane.
Tobin’s second score, 14 minutes from time, was enough to secure the points for the home side, despite several late chances for the visitors.
Bristol began the game well, and were 6-0 up within 7 minutes thanks to Craig Burgess’s short-range try, converted by James Bennett.
Swindon hit back well and on the back of a series of penalties for offside against lazy Bristol defenders created some good chances. Eventually the pressure told, with Milo Hartley forcing his way over on 21 minutes after taking a quick tap penalty. James Slater couldn’t convert.
Things got better for the visitors four minutes later, when James Slater crossed the whitewash to put them into the lead.
On 32 minutes Bristol regained the advantage when Johan Schoeman dived over after collecting a brilliant inside ball from James Pritchard, only to see their lead disappear in less than a minute following a close range try, again from a quick tap penalty, from prop forward Richard White.
Yet by the end of an eventful and spicy first half, Bristol were back ahead. On the stroke of half time Jack Gibson crashed over after collecting a neat offload from Johan Schoeman. James Bennett’s conversion made it 16-14 at the break.
Bristol extended their lead early in the second period, when a Lewis Beer kick caught in the wind, bounced freakishly and was collected by Will Tobin, who sprinted away to touch down from 15 metres out. Bennett’s conversion made it 22-14 to the home side.
Swindon rallied and within 8 minutes were back within two points thanks to a fine try out wide by Chris Kent, brilliantly converted by James Slater.
With defence dominating, it was down to Tobin to produce a final moment of magic to restore Bristol’s six-point advantage. He raced away to score from half way. Bennett couldn’t convert, but the Sonics held out for a morale-boosting victory.