RUGBY LEAGUE: HARD work, determination, and resilience paid off for Coventry Bears on Sunday as the club recorded its first win away from home of the season.
Tom Tsang’s side travelled to Wrexham, knowing just two away games and a home tie remained before the season closed.
Determined not to continue the blank away campaign, Bears were troubled by wet early conditions which presented problems as neither side could get into any rhythm in the first 15 minutes of the game.
Though Wrexham applied pressure, star Bears player Jamahl Hunte intercepted a pass and sprinted 70 yards before crossing the line in spectacular fashion.
Moments later, Matt Reid offloaded the ball to Hayden Freeman who touched down while Paul Emanuelli made no mistake in converting as Bears led 10-0.
However it was a similar offload which put the home side over for the first time, and their successful conversion narrowed the score to 6-10.
Bears soon responded to Wrexham’s opening try with a marker of their own when Brad Delaney scooped up the ball following a Cru kick to race over the line with Emanuelli adding two more points from the conversion – Bears leading 16-6 at the break.
Wrexham piled the pressure on Coventry when pegging the score back to 12-16 shortly into the second half before a further try brought the game level.
Conscious of his side’s ability to fade in the second half, Tsang asked for one big effort from his team.
And he got it when Sam Davies scored his first try for the club before Delaney added to the tally with a conversion to put Bears 22-16 ahead.
With 25 minutes remaining, Bears’ defence dug in deep to hold off any potential threat to win.
Bears Head Coach Tom Tsang was in good spirits after the game.
He said: ‘’With the wet conditions, today was definitely one built on defence.
“I thought we were good value for our lead at half time.
“We had less ball than Crusaders but were more clinical in attack and took our chances well.
“We showed a lot of character in the second half and digged deep to push for the win.
“All 17 players were great and all played their part but I need to give particular credit to Jamahl Hunte who caught every high ball that came his way and scored a fantastic long range try.
“Jason Bass was superb in attack and defence, plus Zak Williams was industrious as ever in the middle of the field.
“Credit also to debutants Sam Davis and Jacob Jones who both showed up really well.”
Bears make the short trip to Oxford on Saturday before their final home game of the season against South Wales on Saturday, September 16.