Waterloo 19 Pertemps Bees 38
The signs were good for Pertemps Bees from the beginning at Blundellsands.
While Bees had conceded 30 points-plus in their last five matches, Waterloo had crossed the 20-point mark only once since gaining promotion to National One and that was during the previous weekend’s against-the-odds victory in Exeter.
When the visitors led at half time 21-7 it seemed that only a monumental collapse in the second half would condemn Steve Williams’ men to a fourth successive defeat.
The match followed the form book and a bonus-point victory proved to be the perfect tonic to sweep away their Newbury blues.
Bees director of rugby Phil Maynard said that the heat was on after the previous weekend’s 33-27 loss at Sharmans Cross Road.
"Everybody felt the pressure right from the top all the way down and hopefully today has put a lot of ghosts to rest," he said. "But there’s still a lot of hard work to do now. The whole squad’s rolling their sleeves up and that’s the attitude we are going to take into the next few games.
"It’s another important win away from home, you have to be pleased with that, and I think everything the lads have been working on this week came together.
"It wasn’t a perfect performance but it was another good step to what we are after, which is consistency."
Bes proved that they have explosive power in their backs. Akapusi Qera may still be struggling to find his blistering early-season form but Dave Knight and on-loan full-back Jon Goodridge were superb.
Another Gloucester loanee, Brad Davies, took on the kicking duties at fly-half in place of the ill Jon Higgins.
Davies got the scoreboard rolling with two simple penalties on five and 11 minutes. Then a crossfield kick from Davies brought the first try on 15 minutes. Matt Nuthall ignored calls for offside to skip past two tacklers and touch down, Davies adding the extras.
Inane errors allowed the hosts back into the match on 24 minutes when Bees conceded a penalty try which was converted by fly-half Steve Nutt.
However, the away side were back on song four minutes later after Goodridge’s determination reaped rewards. Knight’s clearance looked to have been easy pickings for Waterloo but the swift Goodridge came striding through to hack the ball across the posts. The resolute full-back continued to chase and, after a nervy few seconds, Knight picked up possession to touch down.
Davies’s only missed kick of the day followed but he added his third penalty just before half time.
Waterloo lock David Blyth was pushed over eight minutes after the restart and Nutt converted.
Despite an uncomfortable period for Bees, the sin-binning of one of their former players, prop Martin O’Keefe, led to Waterloo’s downfall. Davies slotted home the penalty from O’Keefe’s infringement on 65 minutes before prop Hotilli Asi bundled his way over for his second try of the season six minutes later.
Goodridge sent himself to the top of Bees’ try-scoring charts with his fifth score of the campaign on 75 minutes and wrapped up the bonus point.
He plucked a Davies pass out of the air just past the halfway line and weaved his way through the Waterloo rearguard to score under the posts. A late unconverted try by Freeman Payne failed to dampen Bees’ spirits.
WATERLOO: Murchie (Broxon, 76); Loader, Payne, Sliczny, Van De Venter (Parrot, 40); Nutt (Tyms, 70), Erskine; O’Keefe, Ince (Handley, 73), Ruwers (Smith 76), Blyth (Lyon, 59), Townisan, Brandling-Harris (Nugent, 79), Smith (Hopgood, 67), McKay.
BEES: Goodridge; Billig, Knight (Henderson, 80), T Davies, Nuthall; B Davies, Spee (Baxter, 67); Asi, Pearl (Miles, 60), Long, Gabey, Davidson, Matthews, Qera (George, 70), Halavatau (Rawlins, 80).
Referee: Richard Phillips (RFU)