Last minute try secures Under-18s draw
Fly half Joe Westwood cooly slotted a touchline conversion with the last kick of the game to secure a bonus point draw for Dragons Under-18s on Tuesday night at a cold Ystrad Mynach.
In a bruising Regional Age Grade Championship encounter, Dragons picked up a couple of knocks before Sunday’s final encounter with RGC also at Ystrad Mynach (kick-off 11:30am).
The visitors, who came looking for the double, started strongly with centre Rhun Phillips crashing over after three minutes. Josh Phillips converted to give Scarlets a 7-0 lead.
Visiting second row Aaron Howles plunged over in the 12th minute, following good approach play from the men in red, and Josh Phillips again duly obliged with the extras.
Straight from the kick off, following a home error, Howles was again on hand to score and complete his brace for a 19-0 half-time lead.
Although the Scarlets started strongly in the second half a fine try-saving tackle from Joe Westward on the visiting full back on the line kept the Men of Gwent in touch.
Hooker Connor Chapman forced his way over from short range to cut the deficit to 14 and then on 51 minutes, following a series of fluent handling moves, centre Johnny Paynter outflanked defenders to score.
Chapman was at it again on 55 minutes - another brace to match the one achieved earlier by the Scarlets – and Westwood converted to make it 17-19.
Scarlets immediately pressurised the Dragons defence and on 66 minutes substitute scrum half Williams dealt a huge blow by sprinting down the blindside to score.
Dragons were told it was the last play from the kick-off and managed to regain possession before a penalty saw Westwood drive Dragons into the 22.
From the resulting lineout, replacement hooker Liam Lewis was driven over to the delight of home supporters, players, parents and staff and Westwood converted.
Although it took a late effort to secure some points the second half performance was a vast improvement on the first with the home scrum to the fore.
The region sends its best wishes to prop Jack Powell who unfortunately broke his wrist.
03m R. Phillips t J. Phillips c 0-7
12m Howells t J. Phillips c 0-14
15m Howells t 0-19
44m Chapman t 5-19
51m Paynter t 10-19
55m Chapman t Westwood c 17-19
66m Williams t 17-24
70m Lewis t Westwood c 24-24
Dragons Under-18s: Hamish Anderson (Gregg 41), Carrick McDonough, Johnny Paynter (Barnett 68), Morgan Mohring, Oli Andrew, Joe Westwood, Morgan Lloyd (Richards 43); Aaron Dowse (Williams 68), Conor Chapman (Lewis 68), Adam Williams (Powell 68), Joe Peard (Woodman 37), Lewis Stansfield, George Young, Sam Scarfe, Ben Moa (Thomas 41)
Replacements: Liam Lewis, Jarad Williams, Jack Powell, Ryan Woodman, Lloyd Thomas, Kiean Richards, Evan Gregg, Rocky Barnett.