By Liam Moakes Thursday 20 September 2012 Updated: 20/09 09:33
IT WAS an opening Midlands Four West (South) game to forget for Alcester as they slipped to a 34-0 loss at an impressive newly-promoted Coventrians on Saturday.
There was no sign of such a heavy defeat to come as the sides competed evenly in the early exchanges, with the hosts having the edge in the scrum whilst Alcester looked the more threatening in the backs.
However, Alcester lost a player due to a dismissal 15 minutes in and, down to 14 men, they lost shape and confidence as a reshuffle was forced on them and they had to do without one of their most experienced players for much of the match.
As Alcester's heads dropped the home side grew in confidence and ran in two quickfire tries and never looked back. By half time it was 19-0 to the home side and there was no way back for the visitors.
Playing with a player down for more than an hour was a big task and a huge effort was put in by the young travelling team.
Flanker Tom Barter was man of the match for a gutsy defensive display, backed up by his skipper and back row partner Ben Hope.
Sam Shearn made his first team debut when he came on in the reshuffle and there were also debuts for Simon Gardener and youngster Joey Cull.
Alcester were well beaten and it is impossible to tell how different the result would have been if they had not had a player sent off.
They will now look to bounce back in tomorrow's cup game at home to Hopwood neighbours Five Ways Old Edwardians before returning to league action at home to early season pace-setters Atherstone on September 29.
Alcester 2nds 24 Rugby St Andrews 3rds 0
Warwickshire Merit League Four
ALCESTER'S 2nds made it two league wins from two with a comfortable home win on Saturday.
With numerous changes and some players making their first appearances for some time, their performance was a little disjointed at times, but they still had far too much for their opponents.
The home side applied the early pressure and should really have been in front in the opening exchanges, but they wasted the opportunities that came their way.
Against a much heavier pack, the home eight were under pressure at the scrum throughout, but still managed to forage enough possession to have won the game by a much bigger margin.
In the end they ran in two tries in each half, with the first half scores coming from James Woodhams after great work by wing Luke Spencer and Will Harcourt.
Alcester led 10-0 at the break and added two further scores in the second half through man of the match No 8 Phil Birks and centre Andy Chung. Ollie Braley kicked both second half conversions.
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