Sheffield Eagles 32 Swinton Lions 28: Cory makes it happy 500th game in charge for father Mark Aston with decisive try
Sheffield Eagles director of rugby Mark Aston celebrated his 500th game at the helm in fine style as son Cory's late try earned them a place in the Challenge Cup fifth round with a 32-28 win over Swinton Lions.
Eagles trailed 18-0 in the first quarter but gradually got themselves back in the match before Aston’s try with eight minutes remaining- gave thm the lead for the first time.
The visitors were quick out of the blocks and Stuart Littler darted over before Macauley Hallett finished off a flowing move to extend their lead.
Eagles were struggling to find their rhythm and Quentin Laulu Togagae made a hash of Rhodri Lloyd’s grubber kick on the last and Mike Morrison pounced on the loose ball for the visitors third try.
The home side finally grabbed a foothol when Aston’s timely offload saw Duane Straugheir successfully duck under a high tackle to touch down smartly.
The Lions half-time lead was cut to eight when Laulu Togagae’s assist saw Menzie Yere bulldoze his way to the line.
Swinton started the second half in a positive vein and Hallett powered to the line for a second time but the Eagles fought back almost immediately when Aston’s pass was popped up into the air by Laulu-Togagae into the grateful hands of Ben Blackmore, who forced his way over.
The game was back in the balance when Yere made something out of nothing to release Laulu-Togagae, who spilled the ball, but the referee adjudged it did not go forward and Straugheir pounced for a second time.
Laulu-Togagae’s error saw Hallett dart under the posts for his hat-trick score as the Lions led by eight.
However, Blackmore’s second try of the afternoon from Aston’s pass set up a tense finale.
Eagles scored the decisive try in the final stages when Swinton made a hash of a bomb on the last and Hewitt’s offload saw Aston ghost to the line with Hewitt adding a conversion and penalty score, the last awarded for a late tackle on Aston in the act of scoring.
Blackmore was sent to the bin in the dying minutes following a fracas involving both sets of players but the Eagles held on for victory.
Eagles: Laulu-Togagae, Millar, Yere, Blackmore, Worrincy, Aston, Hewitt, Thorpe, Carlile, Stringer, Knowles, Straugheir; Minchella. Interchange: Fozard, Mexico, Neal, Blagbrough
Scorers: Tries: Straugheir (25, 55), Yere (32), Blackmore (46, 68), Aston (72) Goals: Knowles 1/2, Hewitt 3/5
Swinton: Hyde, Robinson, Littler, Hallett, Scott, White, Atkin, Morrison, Nicholson, Hand, Dwyer, Lloyd, Thornley. Interchange: Lever, Austin, Barlow, Nash.
Scorers: Tries: Littler (7), Hallett (14, 42, 61), Morrison (18) Goals: Atkin 4/5
Referee: Tom Grant