West 45-12 Ardrossan Academicals
West faced Ardrossan in what was a crunch match for the visitors - anything less than a win would relegate them and ensure West play Premier 2 rugby next season. There was light drizzle but little wind - however, the pitch was sticky and a mudbath looked on the cards.
Ardrossan were trying hard but West had most of the answers, opening the scoring when after some good passing and a series of pick and drives, prop Glen Sutherland was not to be stopped and scored under the posts. Blair Smith duly converted and it was 7-0. West extended their lead when they broke out, a chip and chase from Alexander Fisken reaching Ross Carnegie who nearly scored but recycled to Darren Allen who forced his way over the line. Blair Smith did the honours to make it 14-0.
Ardrossan had a lot at stake and were working hard to claw their way back into the match. A good passing move from a lineout found winger Calum McKechnie who grounded in the corner. Jack Anderson converted and the visitors were back in it.
West had other ideas when Ross McAulay found a big hole in the Ardrossan defence, was halted but recycled via Mark Sim to Ross Carnegie who shimmied past 2 defenders to score. Blair Smith had his kicking boots on and made it 21-7.
Ardrossan clawed a try back when they got a lineout on West's 5m line. They executed an effective driving maul and Stewart Lamont grounded. Unconverted, it was closer at 21-12.
West weren't finished for the half and got the bonus point when Ardrossan threw a pass straight into the path of the onrushing Jamie MacAulay who found an open field to score under the posts. Blair Smith's boot made the half time score 28-12, and rather than a dour scramble for penalties, this was turning into a tryfest.
West carried on the good work in the second half when a beautiful passing move nearly scored, but a series of pick and drives shortly afterwards, and some good work from a determined Darren Allen saw the ball reach Mark Jenkinson who is turning into a lethal finisher from close range. Blair Smith converted, 35-12 and looking comfortable for the home side.
Ardrossan tried to get back into it, but West's defence was too good. West were now dominating the scrums and after some elected scrum penalties, Fraser Smeaton broke off the base and passed to Blair Smith who grounded to make it 40-12, for once not converting his own try.
West scored again just before time, Fraser Smeaton scoring off the back of a driving maul. Time was up so a drop kick conversion was unsuccessfully attempted, but West were very happy to go in at 45-12, still in Premier 2 for another season.
West: 1. Billy Dineen, 2. Darren Allen, 3. Glen Sutherland, 4.Colin McInally, 5. Mark Jenkinson, 6. Tom Grey, 7. Craig Mc Coll, 8. Angus Thomson, 9. . Alex Fisken, 10. Ross McAulay, 11, Calum Booth 12. Jamie McAulay, 13. Blair Smith, 14. Ross Carnegie 15. Mark Sim. Substitutes 16: Danny Dineen, 17. Fraser Smeaton, 18 Stuart MacDonald, 19. James Harley