Sheffield Eagles’ Betfred Championship survival hopes received a dent after a 29-18 home defeat to fellow strugglers Swinton Lions.
The Lions bagged only their second victory of the season at the OLP to move within two points of Mark Aston’s side, as ex-Eagle George Tyson came back to haunt his former club with a brace of tries which lifted his current employers off the foot of the Championship standings.
A victory for the Eagles would have given them a handy cushion in the race for survival, but they couldn’t repeat their display which downed Barrow at the Summer Bash, as the fight to stay alive took a new twist.
In the sweltering Steel City heat the Eagles made the perfect start when Jack Ashworth underlined the dual-registration influence by crossing for the Eagles after five minutes, and Cory Aston slotted the extras.
Some brave Swinton defence prevented further inroads before the Lions levelled the scores as Rhodri Lloyd beat two defenders to cross and Chris Hankinson converted.
The Eagles hit-back three minutes later when a move which started on halfway was ended with an Aston converted score.
Aston’s side fluffed a great chance to go further in front and they were punished when Tyson crossed and Hankinson converted for a level game.
Swinton edged in front for the first time just after the break when Hayden Hansen released Mike Butt who touched down, with Hankinson converting.
Disaster struck for the hosts when the visitors scored again five minutes later to put daylight between the two sides. Lloyd’s grubber kick was collected by another ex-Eagle Will Hope who grounded and Hankinson converted for a 12 point lead.
Crucially the next score went to the Eagles just before the hour mark when Jake Spedding crossed after a Swinton error, and Aston’s conversion put the Eagles within striking distance.
Josh Woods’ drop-goal added further insurance leaving the Eagles plenty to do in the final 10 minutes, but it was the visitors who made the game safe when Tyson threw the dummy before crossing for his second score to seal the points.
Eagles: Costello; Millar, Yere, Spedding, Blackmore; Aston, Makelim; Offerdahl, Fozard, Magrin; Ashworth, Pick; Toole. Interchange: G. Burns, Weldon, P. Burns, James.
Scorers: Tries: Ashworth (5), Aston (22), Spedding (58) Goals: Aston 3/3
Swinton: Fell; Butt, Hankinson, Tyson, Brown; Woods, J. Hansen; Bracek, Ganson, Austin; Lloyd, Paisley; Hope. Interchange: Barlow, H. Hansen, Shelford, Thornley.
Scorers: Tries: Lloyd (19), Tyson (30, 79), Butt (45), Hope (50), Goals: Hankinson 4/5 Drop Goals: Woods 1/1