Scrum-half Hugo Crush led the way with a hat-trick of tries as Highland got back to winning ways in National One in some style on Saturday.
The Inverness outfit had lost to GHA the previous week, but were on the front foot from minute one this time around against another Glasgow side, GHK, at Canal Park and came out on top 50-21 with a bonus point.
As well as Crush’s trio of scores, Andrew Kellock, Magnus Henry (2), Jack Sutherland and Adriu Muritoki all crossed while Scott Fraser put the icing on the cake with five conversions.
They are second in the table now behind unbeaten Ayr after three wins and one loss to date and Highland head coach Dave Carson said: “That was more like it, the guys put in a great performance.
“We got off to a really fast start, scoring two tries in the first six minutes, and we never really looked back. Although the attacking play was really good, what was more pleasing was some of our defensive work.
“At GHA we had been passive in that area, but here we were sharp and made out first up tackle more often than not and it was just a very pleasing day.”
GoGos make a statement
Gordonians’ fine run of form in National Two continued, a third bonus point win on the spin leaving them fourth in the table and just five points off leaders Lasswade.
This week it was a 38-9 victory for the Countesswells men at Stirling County and given Gordonians were in National Three last year and County were in National One, it is quite a scalp.
County were 8-0 up early on at Bridgehaugh before a penalty from Josh Andrew got Gordonians on the scoreboard. Struan Robertson and Fin Lennox then scored tries, both converted by Andrew, to make it 17-8 at half-time.
Archie Falconer and Ben Hutton both scored try doubles after the interval with Andrew converting one to seal the win.
“We had a very shaky first ten minutes, we couldn’t just get or keep hold of the ball, but the boys didn’t panic,” Gordonians head coach Ryan Morrice said.
“We stuck to our processes towards the end of the first half and the Stirling defence cracked as we scored two good tries to give us a foothold in proceedings.
“In the second half we were braced for an onslaught, but we never let it happen.
“The young backline showed a real maturity, with stand-off Josh Andrew pulling the strings and not letting Stirling get any time or territory in our half.”
Frustrations continue for Grammar
Aberdeen Grammar are bottom and still after a first win of 2023-24, losing out to Newton Stewart 27-22 on the road despite leading after 77 minutes.
Newton Stewart were 20-5 up at half-time with Grammar only having a Jack Burnett try on the board, but they rallied after the interval.
Indeed, in a second half where Aberdeen were on top up front, they got their noses in front 22-20 with three minutes to go thanks to two tries from Craig Shepherd and two conversions and a penalty from Max Bowman.
“Newton Stewart, to their credit, then scored an opportunistic try to win the match,” Grammar head coach Eric Strachan explained.
“I can’t fault the boys efforts, I asked them to show me some heart at half-time and they did that, unfortunately it just wasn’t enough this time.”
The Grammar team to face Newton Stewart RFC has been confirmed 💪
— Aberdeen Grammar Rugby (@ABDNRugby) September 22, 2023
There was late drama in Edinburgh too as Orkney scored a try and a conversion with the clock in the red to defeat Boroughmuir 21-20 at Meggetland in the top of the table National Three clash.
The victory means Orkney have won four from four and are now second in the standings behind Allan Glen’s.
Jon Tait, Robbie Firth and Chris Guthrie scored tries while Tait converted two and James Linklater converted one.
In the women’s Premiership, Garioch were put to the sword 98-17 at home to Stirling County and are still winless.
Megan Hyland, Nikki Simpson and Lesley Davis scored tries for Garioch and head coach Dave Duguid said: “In the first 40 minutes we never showed up and you just can’t give a team like Stirling easy ball.
“In the second half we dug in and were unlucky not to get a try bonus point.”