Rochdale Hornets v Sheffield Eagles
Sunday 29th April 2018, 15:00pm
Championship - Round: 12
Stats over last 8 encounters
Sheffield Eagles eased any relegation worries for the time being with a 38-16 victory over Rochdale Hornets at the Crown Oil Arena.
Corey Makelim stamped his authority on the full-back position with his first try in Eagles colours while Matty Costello came back into the side at centre.
Mark Aston's men showed great defensive qualities in the second half, limiting Rochdale to just one try after the interval.
Ryan Millar got the ball rolling for the Eagles in the sixth minute as he touched down to break the deadlock. Simon Brown added the extras.
Sheffield then doubled their advantage following a load of pressure on the Hornets line. Greg Burns burrowed his way over and Brown, once again, was on hand to add the goal.
With the half-hour mark approaching, USA international full-back Corey Makelim opened his account for the club as he dummied his opposite man to get over the whitewash. Brown goaled.
Three tries in the final ten minutes sparked the game further into life, with two of those going the way of the hosts.
The first of Rochdale’s scores came courtesy of Lee Mitchell, who was on the end of a Danny Yates pass. The conversion was unsuccessful.
Sheffield responded on 35 minutes as Mark Offerdahl copied from his countryman by registering a four-pointer.
The prop forward powered his way over but Brown was off target on this occasion.
And as the half-time whistle loomed, Rochdale found their way through the Eagles defence.
Billy Brickhill’s try, converted by Tyler Whittaker, cut the deficit to just 12 points and Sheffield knew a good start to the second half was needed or it could end up being a nervy afternoon.
Former Eagles trialist Matty Hadden put the pressure on as he scored the opening try of the second half on 43 minutes. Whittaker added the extras for 16-22.
Jack Ashworth answered back on soon after as he got on the end of a grubber kick. Matty Fozard converted.
Neither side could add any more points until the final quarter when Sheffield wrapped up the victory.
Joshua Toole and Fozard were the try-scorers as the visiting faithful started celebrating a vital win.
By Dan Fowler