Widnes Vikings 38
Sheffield Eagles 24
EAGLES wilted in the sun as they went down yet again to bogey team Widnes.
Eagles have never beaten Widnes since five seasons ago and an error-prone display helped Vikings keep their record. Mark Aston’s team have a chance to bounce back when they host Barrow at Don Valley on Thursday.
The game was sealed by two quick tries early in either half from the Vikings who will play in the Super League next season.
The Eagles started well with an interception by Quentin Laulu-Togagae setting up a spell of pressure with Mitch Stringer and Jamie Cording going close to scores. Handling errors gave Widnes back-to-back sets and they took the lead from full back Danny Hulme. Kurt Haggerty added the goal.
Three minutes later Ben Kavanagh broke a tackle and sent in back rower MacGraff Leuluai for the Vikings’ second try.
Only a great covering tackle from winger Tim Bergin stopped Hulme claiming his second try with a length of the field break.
Eagles were disrupted when Misi Taulapapa suffered a head injury and although the full back returned he had to go off again.
Menzie Yere just couldn’t take a pass that would have put the Eagles back in the game and Widnes moved further ahead with a Richard Varkulis try converted by former Eagles centre Tangi Ropati. Winger Keven Penny added the Vikings fourth try with Haggery adding the goal but with a minute left of the half the Eagles hit back. The kick-off was fumbled by Hulme and half-back Kyle Wood put the ball out to Cording who crashed over. Brown added the goal but Eagles trailed 22-6 at half-time.
From the restart Eagles scored with Wood going in under the posts from dummy half and Brown added the goal.
Again Widnes produced a two-try burst. Haggerty finished a passing move and Penny claimed his second. Haggerty added both goals.
The Eagles kept going forward and following a tap penalty hooker Andrew Henderson created the gap for Yere to go in. Brown added the goal.
A try from Dave Allen pushed the Vikings lead out and in the final ten minutes the Eagles desperately tried to salvage a losing bonus point but could only add a try and goal from Brown two minutes from time.
Widnes Hulme; Flynn, Ropati, Gardner, Penny; I’Anson, Mellor; Pickersgill, Thomas Coyle, Kavanagh, Finnigan, Leuluai, Haggerty. Subs: Varkulis, Allen, Crosby, James Coyle. Tries: Cording, 39, Wood, 42, Yere, 64, Brown, 78; Goals: Brown 4/4.
Sheffield Taulapapa; Finnigan, Yere, Cording, Bergin; Laulu-Togagae, Brown; Howieson, Henderson, Stringer, Szostak, Green, Hirst. Subs: Rowe, Hepworth, Wood, Hanson. Tries: Hulme, 9, Leuluai, 12, Varkulis, 24, Penny, 37, 55, Haggerty, 48, Allen, 69; Goals: Haggerty 4/6; Ropati 1/1.
Penalties: Widnes 11 Eagles 5. Attendance: 4,027.