A LATE and valiant comeback could not save Coventry at Rosslyn Park on Saturday as they slipped to a sixth successive defeat on the road in National League One.
Rosslyn were able to compete a league double over Coventry thanks to a 22-16 win on a cold and wet 3G pitch in Roehampton which proved difficult to master for both sides.
It was the visitors who got their noses in front thanks to the boot of Cliffie Hodgson in the second minute and in the process he became the first Coventry player to reach 1,000 points in league rugby in less than four seasons at the club.
However Rosslyn hit back four minutes later through a Sam Shires try which Tom Whelan converted, but Hodgson kicked another penalty on 23 minutes to draw Coventry back to within just one point.
But Rosslyn scored again through Hugo Ellis to give his side a 12-6 lead at the break with Coventry still in with a shout of winning if they could cut out the errors.
Their task was made all the more harder when Loma Kivalu was yellow carded withing a minute of the re-start and Whelan kicked the resultant penalty to stretch Rosslyn’s lead to nine points.
Former Coventry forward Ed Milne was then sin-binned but that did not affect the hosts as they scored a third try when Mark Kohler found a way through the visiting defence and Scott Sneddon added the extra points.
To their credit Coventry managed to raise their game as both sides returned to full strength and they scored perhaps the try of the match.
Ryan Hough produced a most telling break on the left before setting up Dom Lespierre on the right who was able to make the remaining 40m distance with some impressive pace for his first try in 12 matches and Hodgson converted to give renewed hope.
Hodgson then landed his third penalty of the match to earn his side a losing bonus point but despite a late rally in five minutes of added on time, the visitors were unable to find another breakthrough.