Report: Sheffield Eagles 16 Oldham Roughyeds 24
The Eagles will be looking anxiously over their shoulders at the foot of the Championship after defeat to fellow strugglers Oldham Roughyeds.
Sheffield got off to the perfect start on two minutes when the in-form Cory Aston exchanged passes with Matt James to bisect the Oldham defensive line and the half-back ghosted to the line.
However, Oldham struck back almost immediately when Kieron Gill powered his way over the line from point-blank range.
Following a first quarter littered with penalties for both sides, Oldham punished the home side for an indiscretion near their own line when Lewis Palfrey planted a kick between the sticks.
Sheffield hit back just three minutes later when Adam Neal made a superb break through the Oldham line and Quentin Laulu Togagae was on his shoulder, to race under the posts, with Aston adding the extras.
However, the PNG star went from hero to villain in Oldham’s next foray of note when his weak tackle allowed Kenny Hughes to successfully race for the line, as Palfrey converted successfully to give the Roughyeds a narrow two-point lead at the interval.
The Eagles’ hopes suffered a blow at the start of the second half as a fine flowing move had the home side backtracking and Liam Thompson and Danny Grimshaw combined smartly to see the former go over before Palfrey added the conversion to extend Oldham’s lead to eight points.
Minutes later, Sheffield squandered an opportunity to reduce the arrears when Neal was held up just shy of the line before Michael Knowles looked to have put Garry Lo in at the corner, but he was adjudged to have had a foot in touch as he reached for the line, chalking off the score.
However, the home side continued to press and Frenchman Stan Robin crowned his Sheffield debut in fine style when he finished off a stylish Eagles move to reduce the deficit to four points although Aston’s conversion smashed against the upright.
The on-loan Catalan winger came within inches of levelling matters when he darted for the corner but he was ushered into touch with the line in sight before Palfrey screwed a penalty kick wide to keep the game in the balance, entering the final ten minutes.
However, the Lancastrians delivered the knockout blow with four minutes remaining when Foster showed good upper body strength to power his way to the line.
Eagles: Laulu Togagae, Lo, Yere, Chappell, Blackmore, Aston, Fozard, Thorpe, Carlile, Wheeldon, James, Straugheir, Knowles. Interchange: Minchella, Robin, Neal, Mexico.
Oldham: Lepori, Clay, Grimshaw, Gill, Chisholm, Palfrey, Owen, Joy, Foster, Burke, Briscoe, Langtree, Thompson. Interchange: Ward, Hughes, Dickinson, Hope
Referee: T Grant