Eagles seal top 8 spot

Menzie Yere juggles for the loose ball before scoring
Menzie Yere juggles for the loose ball before scoring
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Eagles’ late-season revival gathered pace as they made it three straight wins to strengthen their grip on a play-offs place.

On a day of erratic weather and some eccentric tries they always had the upper hand against relegation-threatened Haven.

Half-backs Dominic Brambani and Kyle Briggs gave them the edge and fullback Quentin Laulu Togagae displayed great timing with two tries at crucial points in the game at Owlerton.

The win assures Eagles of a top eight finish and sets them up for Wednesday night’s game against Rochdale at Sheffield Hallam University’s Sports Park.

“Winning is what it’s all about,” said coach Mark Aston. “It wasn’t vintage but lots of positives at the start of the game and the start of the second half.

“The lads dug in and won the game and that’s the most important thing at this time. Let’s get to Bawtry Road on Wednesday and put another show on.”

Michael Knowles and Peter Green failed tests with Patch Walker and Jack Blagbrough in for the Eagles.

Eagles shot into the lead with two tries that exposed the weakness on Haven’s right.

Brambani provided the final pass for second rower Matt Garside to go over for the first and stand-off Kyle Briggs broke the line from15 metres out. Brambani kicked the first of six goals.

Jesse Joe Parker picking up a loose ball provided Haven’s reply but Eagles hit back with centre Menzie Yere getting to a chip kick from Briggs.

Misi Taulapapa’s delay in clearing a kick saw Haven’s Jordan Burns nip in to touch down but that was cancelled out as a high kick into the in-goal area by Brambani took a wicked bounce for Walker to touch down.

Winger Shaun Ainscough kept Haven in touch with a solo 70-metre break to leave Eagles 24-16 ahead at half-time. Eagles didn’t waste time from the restart with Yere crashing through before passing inside for Laulu-Togagae to finish.

Haven came back as Ainscough ‘flipped’ the ball up as he was tackled for Southernwood to touch down.

Eagles went into their shell before the dismal spell was broken with a break by Briggs sending the supporting Laulu-Togagae scurrying in under the posts. Brambani added the goal.

Haven rescued a bonus point with Ainscough in at the corner for his second try and Southernwood kicking his fourth goal.