Four tries inside the opening twelve minutes of the second half were crucial to Sheffield’s 26-6 victory over Halifax in an early season top of the table clash.
Tries from Menzie Yere, Cory Aston and two from Rob Worrincy all came in quick succession to give the Eagles a 20-0 lead. Debutant Elliot Minchella also managed to cross with ten minutes remaining. Minchella was the only change for the Eagles as he replaced Steve Thorpe.
Will Sharp scored the visitors only try. Halifax spurned multiple opportunities inside the first half with Jacob Fairbank, Adam Tangata and Ben Johnston coming close but they couldn’t score meaning the game was scoreless at the interval.
The victory means Sheffield are now top of the league after two games of the 2016 Championship season however the rest of the teams play over the weekend. This was the Eagles’ first game at their new home – The SHU Sports Park which managed to draw an attendance of 1349.
Sheffield struggled to create many clear cut chances in the first half whereas Halifax looked the more likely to score. Fairbank broke midway through the first half but a last ditch tackle from George Tyson, on his home debut, prevented the visitors.
Gareth Moore managed to cut through the Eagles line before finding Adam Tangata however the latter couldn’t collect the ball. On the stroke of half time Fax had the best chance of the half as Ben Johnston looked set to score but the full-back lost his footing inches before the line.
Halifax were denied a try in the opening minute of the second half as Ryan Maneely was penalised for crossing and this seemed to wake the Eagles up as they punished the visitors.
Former Fax man, Rob Worrincy, was the first to score as he powered through numerous attempts to prevent him getting to the corner. The Eagles extended their lead just a few moments later. Worrincy turned provider this time around as he found his centre Yere with an offload before the Papua New Guinea international crashed his way over.
The early second half onslaught continued when Dave Hewitt’s long punt down field was dealt with horribly by Halifax allowing Ben Blackmore to stab the ball forward again. Cory Aston chased and grounded under the sticks. Michael Knowles converted his first of the game.
Another try soon followed as some neat play from Quentin Laulu-Togagoe opened up an opportunity for Worrincy. The winger finished well and got over for his second, and the Eagles fourth, in just twelve minutes.
Halifax managed to stop the Sheffield scoring spree and did eventually get themselves on the scoreboard. Will Sharp had come close on two occasions beforehand but this time he managed to burrow under the oncoming challenges to finish in the corner. Steve Tyrer converted.
However the Eagles regained their twenty-point lead with ten minutes remaining. Yere burst through the defensive line before releasing an unbelievable offload to an onrushing Minchella who got the line on his debut. Minchella’s try was the fourth of the Eagles five down Yere and Worrincy’s flank. Knowles converted again.
The Eagles managed to maintain their 100% start to the 2016 season and now face a tough trip to Mount Pleasant to face Batley Bulldogs on Sunday.
Sheffield: QLT, Worrincy, Yere, Tyson, Blackmore; Aston, Hewitt; Wheeldon, Carlile, Neal, Knowles, Straugheir, James.
Interchanges: Fozard, Stringer, Mexico, Minchella.
Halifax: Johnston, Sharp, Smeaton, Tyrer, Saltonstall; G. Moore, Murrell; Ambler, Kaye, Cahalane, Manning, Barber, Fairbank.
Interchanges: Tangata, Maneely, A. Moore, Robinson.
Referee: C. Kendall. Attendance: 1349.