Sheffield Eagles lose further ground on top five after 38-18 defeat against Featherstone Rovers at OLP

Sheffield Eagles lost further ground on the top five after a 38-18 defeat against Featherstone Rovers at the OLP.

Sheffield Eagles v Featherstone Rovers - agony for the Eagles' Pat Moran after another defeat. Pic Steve Ellis
Sheffield Eagles v Featherstone Rovers - agony for the Eagles' Pat Moran after another defeat. Pic Steve Ellis

Mark Aston’s side missed the chance to leapfrog their opponents after a third consecutive league defeat, as strong starts to both halves by Rovers caught the home side cold.

The Eagles threatened a second-half comeback but left themselves too much to do as Rovers completed a league double over Aston’s side.

The visitors, one of the Championship’s in-form sides, carried their recent momentum into the early stages, but were denied a try in the second minute after the pass to Connor Carey was deemed forward.

They didn’t have to wait long for the next opening as Dale Ferguson stepped inside his marker to drive over the whitewash to score, and ex-Eagle Dane Chisholm added the two.

Featherstone further increased the lead when a kick on the last took two ricochets into the hands of Tom Holmes who touched down for a converted score.

Cameron King’s dart from dummy half produced a third converted try as the visitors threatened to run away with proceedings.

The Eagles stemmed the flow and grabbed a much needed foothold as Pat Moran drove through a Featherstone roadblock to crash over the line, and Pat Walker kicked the extras.

The home side were much better during the closing stages of the half with Walker’s grubber just eluding Aaron Brown who was inches away from another try.

Moments later Josh Guzdek was held up as he arrowed towards the Featherstone line, as the visitors produced an impressive defensive showing to keep out the hosts.

Rovers picked themselves up again at the start of the second half as King dived over from close range for his second converted try.

Josh Hardcastle enjoyed a walk in moments later after the Eagles were penalised, with Chisholm converting for a comfortable lead.

The Eagles desperately needed the next score and they got it when Ben Hellewell completed a fine move with a try in the corner which was expertly converted by Walker from the touchline.

The gap was furthered narrowed as Nathan Mason touched down after a one-handed stretch to the line for a converted score.

A Chisholm penalty edged Rovers further clear, and James Harrison’s late converted try sealed the win for the visitors.

Eagles: Guzdek; Millar, Ogden, Hellewell, Crookes; Thackeray, Walker; Moran, Davey, Mason; Farrell, Davies; Brown. Interchange: Pick, Knowles, Makelim, Broadbent.

Scorers: Tries: Moran (21), Hellewell (51), Mason (64) Goals: Walker 3/3

Featherstone: Golding; Briscoe, Sutcliffe, Hardcastle, Carey; Chisholm, Holmes; Harrison, King, Ferguson; Day, Walters; Lockwood. Interchange: Cooper, Render, Ormondroyd, Wheeldon.

Scorers: Tries: Ferguson (7), Holmes (14), King (17, 43), Hardcastle (46), Harrison (75) Goals: Chisholm 7/7

Attendance: 1,321

Referee: Billy Pearson