OLDHAM, last year’s League 1 champions, picked up their first Championship win at the third attempt against an out of sorts Dewsbury Rams side.
Scoring seven tries in total the hosts completely dominated the first half, leading 24-0 at the interval and Paul Naylor’s men were in no mood to let their advantage slip.
“It’s the club’s first win at this level since 2005 so it’s a memorable occasion for the fans and for everyone connected with the club,” enthused coach Scott Naylor, who masterminded this league win with his able lieutenants Lee Spencer and Peter Carey.
“On behalf of the lads on the field I’ll dedicate this win to the fans, who again turned up in numbers on a bad day and got behind us from start to finish.”
But his Rams counterpart Glenn Morrison was left to reflect on the damage done in the first 30 minutes, by which time Roughyeds led 18-0 on the back of an 8-2 penalty count in the home sides favour.
Referee Joe Cobb had a busy afternoon, whistling up 23 penalties in total and putting four players – three from Dewsbury –- in the sin-bin.
First to go, for tripping in the 23rd minute, was Rams winger Dalton Grant who was followed just before half-time by Oldham full-back Richard Lepori, for a professional foul on Joel Farrell, as the Rams sub chased down a loose ball close to Oldham’s line after Lewis Palfrey had a kick charged down.
Trailing 30-10 with little more than ten minutes left some of the Rams lads lost their composure and both Nathan Conroy and Ben Reynolds were also shown yellow, both for dissent, in separate incidents within a minute of each other.
Full of vim and vigour, and no small amount of skill, Roughyeds made the most of their penalty advantage in the early stages and raced into a substantial lead with unanswered tries by Tom Ashton, Gareth Owen and Danny Langtree in the first 24 minutes.
Owen had a massive influence on the game, scoring again in the second half and then setting up his side’s seventh and final try with a couple of dummies up the short side before sending Adam Clay in at the corner.
Langtree grabbed his second with an interception just before half-time and, already 24-0 down, Rams had a mountain to climb.
They made a better fist of it in the second half with a brace of tries by winger Dalton Grant and a third, in the last minute, by Jack Teanby.
But Oldham had no intention of sitting on their first-half laurels and they also scored three second-half tries by Michael Ward, man-of-the-match hooker Owen and finally Clay.