National One round-up: Stirling Wolves halt Cartha QP’s momentum

Kelso pick up a win on the road in a high scoring encounter against Ayr at Millbrae, while Melrose topple Highland at The Greenyards

Prop Fraser Muir on the rampage for Stirling Wolves against Cartha Queens Park on Saturday. Image: Bryan Robertson
Prop Fraser Muir on the rampage for Stirling Wolves against Cartha Queens Park on Saturday. Image: Bryan Robertson

AFTER two losses on the spin, Stirling Wolves got their first victory of November at home to Cartha Queens Park on Saturday, claiming a bonus point in the process. 

“We are very pleased with this win, especially as we had to make a late change in the backline as Adam Shaw, our scrum-half and a consistent performer, wasn’t fit, but the boys adapted well,” said head coach Chris Faill. 

“The game was always tight and you could see the confidence Cartha had gained from some recent positive results. We managed to contain them though including some excellent defence in the last five minutes. James Gibson carried well and Andy Orr led from the front on what was a big day at Bridgehaugh with the Super6 team playing their first home game too.”

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Gibson, Nik Binning, Craig Robertson and Orr were the Wolves try scorers with Jonny Hope, the skipper, kicking 11 points. Cartha picked up a losing bonus point and scored tries through Graham Williamson, Thibault Pin, Sam Harrison while Wayne Burrows kicked the rest of the points.

Kelso backed up last week’s win over Boroughmuir by coming out on top away to Ayr in a high scoring affair. The 43-33 bonus point triumph puts the Borderers on 17 points and five points above the bottom two. Frankie Robson (2) and Matt Kindness scored tries in the first half for the visitors and Craig Dods kicked three conversions as they went in at 21-21 at Millbrae. A penalty try came after half-time and then Arran Jackson and Mark Wilson went over, with Dods contributing 10 point from the boot.

“A great win on the road for us which gives us some momentum heading into the next game at home to Dundee,” Kelso skipper Murray Hastie said. “We played some good rugby at times and dug in to keep ourselves ahead while the guys played right to the final whistle.”

Dundee High are still bottom after they lost at home 36-10 to a resurgent Gala side. The Maroons have now not lost in the league since October 12th  and are up to fifth place in the table with this third win on the bounce. Ross Cooke scored a penalty and then a try and a conversion to put Gala 10-0 up and they never looked back. Fellow backs Fergus Johnston and Daniel Nicholson got in on the act and they were 24-7 up at the break. Johnston and Richard Tod scored tries in the second half for the victors, while Ruaridh Hood was Dundee’s try scorer and Paul Kerr kicked five points.

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Boroughmuir are still 11th, but picked up a losing bonus point in a 24-17 loss to Heriot’s Blues on Friday night at Meggetland. Ross Hutchison, Max Oliver, Jonny Betts and Charlie Simpson scored the Heriot’s tries as they dug out the bonus point win, with Graham Wilson kicking two conversions.

“We really had to grind this win out, so delighted with the five points,” said Heriot’s head coach Jamie Parker. “It was not the prettiest game of rugby I have ever seen, but hats off to Boroughmuir for their defence.”

Gav Welsh and Jack Hamilton scored the Boroughmuir tries with Callum Anderson kicking seven points.

“We were only four points down at the break and we knew if wee could play with accuracy we could cause Heriot’s problems,” said Boroughmuir head coach Richard Sievwright. “We gave Heriot’s the edge too much and they turned the screw with their big forwards. It was an important losing bonus point though.”

Heriot’s are second in the table seven points behind leaders Biggar who defeated Watsonians 40-7 at Hartreemill, with tries from Luhann Kutze, Lewis Stewart and Rowan Stewart, plus three Andrew Jardine conversions giving he home team a commanding 21-0 lead at half. After the break, tries from man-of-the-match Euan Sanderson (2) and Chris Mulligan, plus two more conversions from Jardine saw them home. Thomas Klein scored Watsonians’ only try.

Melrose are third and behind Heriot’s only on points difference after a 31-14 home win against Highland. The Borderers led 3-0 until just before half-time when Highland had a man sin-binned and Gary McWilliam took advantage with a converted try. Trystan Andrews, recently named in the Scotland under-19 squad, McWilliam and Kieran Clark secured the bonus point in the second half. Over the piece Donald Crawford kicked 11 points. Mike Gordon and Tom Smith scored late converted tries for fourth place Highland.

“I asked for a reaction after the loss at Cartha and I got the performance I was looking for,” said Melrose head coach Stuart Johnston. “Defensively we were spot on, we didn’t let Highland play and when we got opportunities we took them. It was probably the most consistent 80 minute performance we have put together this season.”

National League Division One results –


Table as it stands –

Heriot's Blues19145067236530716173
Stirling Wolves18981413429-166347
Cartha QP197111559587-2811445
Dundee High203170313695-3823116

Fixtures and results:   Premiership  |  National 1National 2  |  Super 6Six Nations 2020

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Gary Heatly
About Gary Heatly 175 Articles
Gary has had a love for both rugby and writing for as far back as he can remember. Having cut his teeth in the ‘real world’ of journalism at the Midlothian Advertiser local newspaper for a couple of years between 2005 and 2007, he has since been kept busy covering sport, mainly rugby. He was a member of the editorial team at SCRUM Magazine for 11 years until recently and now provides regular rugby content to various national and local newspapers, magazines and websites via his company GH Media as well as hosting a podcast. Twitter: G_HMedia