11th March 2019, 20:47
Eagles taste defeat at Featherstone
Sheffield Eagles were on the receiving end of a 32-14 loss against Featherstone Rovers at the LD Nutrition Stadium yesterday afternoon.
Having gone down to 12 men late in the first half as Blake Broadbent saw red for a tip tackle, the Eagles cut the gap to just two points after the break but a yellow card for James Davey saw the floodgates open.
Castleford Tigers loanee Calum Turner, alongside dual-registered Leeds Rhinos full-back Ashton Golding, were the standouts for the Rovers.
Ryan Millar kept his good form going with a brace but his efforts were in vain as Sheffield suffered defeat for the first time in 2019.
Mark Aston made two changes to the side that beat Batley Bulldogs as Greg Burns and Shaun Pick replaced Corey Makelim and Sonny Esslemont.
Featherstone opened the scoring on six minutes through James Lockwood, who rattled on to a flat Cameron King pass. Turner converted.
The hosts extended their advantage with a Turner try in the 17th minute. In muddy conditions, a two-score deficit was always going to be tough to fight back from and the Eagles couldn’t quite catch up.
However, they did respond with their first score of the game as Pat Walker’s pinpoint kick found Millar who touched down. Walker couldn’t convert.
Golding was next over for the Rovers as he showed silky footwork to step past Walker to the whitewash. Turner added the extras for 16-4.
Four minutes were left on the clock when potential for an Eagles comeback took a massive knock. Broadbent was given his marching orders as he tipped Josh Hardcastle over the horizontal.
Featherstone’s players certainly made their feelings known before the referee went to his back pocket to brandish red.
This didn’t deter the Eagles, though, who finished the half well thanks to a Joel Farrell four-pointer. Walker converted as the sides headed to the sheds with Featherstone 16-10 up.
It was a level playing field in the 46th minute as Rovers forward Jack Bussey was given a yellow card.
The Eagles showed their worth when it was 12v12 and Millar slid over for his second try of the afternoon. Walker had a chance to level the scores but couldn’t convert.
Having only just come back on the field, Bussey made an instant impact as he powered over. Turner converted for a two-score lead.
The Eagles went down to 11 men with just over ten minutes to go as Davey took a seat in the sin-bin for a high tackle.
Turner and John Davies added tries to Featherstone’s tally as Ryan Carr’s side strolled to victory with a two-man advantage in the dying embers of the contest.
By Dan Fowler, photo by Alex Coleman