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Report: Loughborough Lightning 36-18 Bristol Bears Women

A strong second half display from Loughborough Lightning downs Bristol Bears Women in round five of the Tyrrell’s Premier 15s.

A try in either half and eight points from the boot of Elinor Snowsill proved too little for Kim Oliver’s side as the hosts ran in six tries to maintain their unbeaten start to the season. 

What Happened? 

Bristol Bears Women came out of the blocks flying, applying early pressure on the Lightning defence and they took the lead in the tenth minute when Elinor Snowsill converted a penalty in front of the sticks. 

The hosts then bagged the first try of the game when Charlotte Pearce finished a brilliant backs move that started in the Lightning twenty-two. 

Snowsill bought the Bears within one point thanks to second penalty, but Pearce crossed in the corner soon after for her second of the afternoon. 

Kim Oliver’s side looked to immediately hit back and they did so on the thirty minute mark, Caity Mattinson rifled a miss-pass into the hands of Lilly Stoeger-Goddard who dotted down to bring the Bears right back into the game. 

On the stroke of half-time Lightning full-back, Olivia Jones extended her side’s lead to 17-11, she showed a great turn of pace to get away from the Bears’ defenders and then open up to finish in the corner. 

Bristol upped the tempo of the play after the half-time break with the forwards hounding the Lightning defence, they eventually got their reward when Poppy Leitch burrowed her way over the line. Snowsill converted from the kicking-tee to give the Bears a one point lead. 

Both sides were going blow for blow in what was a very physical encounter and Lightning reclaimed the lead when scrum-half Jenny Maxwell showed great awareness to dart over from the base of a ruck.

As the second half progressed the hosts seemed to go from strength-to-strength and the score between the two sides widened when Natasha Jones and Cath O’donnell both crossed in the final ten minutes to secure the victory and keep Lightning’s unbeaten start intact.  

Key Moment:

Having just reclaimed the lead through a Jenny Maxwell try, Loughborough were looking to turn the screw and put some daylight between the two sides.

Katy Daley-McLean put in a huge sixty metre kick to pin the Bears in the corner and Loughborough managed to turn the ball over at the line-out, which resulted in Natasha Jones crashing over to all but seal the game for the hosts. 


Bristol Bears Women squad in full:

15. Merryn Doidge, 14. Lilly Stoeger-Goddard, 13. Lucy Attwood, 12. Phoebe Murray, 11. Cat McNaney, 10. Elinor Snowsill, 9. Caity Mattinson; 1. J.Thomas, 2. Clara Nielson (C), 3. Ellie Mulhearn, 4. Amelia Buckland-Hurry, 5. Hollie Cunningham, 6. Ebony Jefferies, 7. Poppy Leitch, 8. Kate Newton

Impact Players: 16. Michaella Roberts, 17. Mackenzie Carson, 18. Esme Bird, 19. Rownita Marston, 20. Simi Pam, 21. Lucy Burgess, 22. Alice Middleton