Feb 10, 2018
Saracens overcome Newcastle in challenging conditions at Allianz Park
Saracens marked five years since making Allianz Park their permanent home by navigating challenging conditions to edge Newcastle Falcons 25-3 in an up and down game in north London this afternoon.
With wet conditions hampering the efforts of both sides it was a slow start to the opening forty, dominated by points from the boots of Ben Spencer and Joel Hodgson who traded penalties in the early stages of the half.
The first points of the game went the way of the hosts when Ben Spencer slotted a straightforward penalty in front of the sticks. It was not long though before Newcastle equalised as Joel Hodgson kicked three points of his own from close range to level the scores. Spencer pulled the home side ahead again soon after, giving Sarcens a slender 6-3 lead ahead of the half hour mark.
Throughout the half though it was Saracens who enjoyed their fair share of possession and, with just over ten minutes left to play in the half, the pressure eventually told as the men in black claimed the first try of the afternoon. A bruising carry from Will Skelton penetrated the Newcastle line and quick ball across the Saracens’ back line brought the home side within inches of the line, where Richard Barrington drove over from close range.
The try had the desired effect and all at once the half came to life. Saracens were nearly in for their second score just moments later when Alex Lozowski’s chip bounced just out of reach for the incoming Liam Williams. The TMO was called in however, who adjudged that Sinoti Sinoti had pushed Williams and duly booked the Newcastle winger as he awarded Saracens the penalty try to give the home side a 20-3 lead.
It looked for most of the second half as if the second forty would be a scoreless affair as both sides struggled to make an impact on the other’s 22. Possession remained rooted firmly in the midfield as the slippery ball forced a number of handling errors for both Sarries and the Falcons and prevented any serious attacking threats from being made. In the end it was the wet ball which set up Saracens for their third try just minutes before the full time whistle. The ball squirmed away from the Newcastle defence and replacement fly half Max Malins made the most of the opportunity as he scurried after it and slid over the try line. The conversion missed the mark but Sarries closed out the game by 25 points to 3.