After a 3 week break the Stags were back in action last Saturday as they travelled to Aberdeen to take on North Police Scotland in the quarter final of the Caledonia Shield. Grangemouth made several changes for the game. Harvey and Stangoe were back in the starting lineup while there were first starts of the season for Clyne and Forsyth. In addition there were positional changes for McNab, Skelton and Dempsey. The Stags played up the slope in the first half and started strongly. They took the lead with a Skelton penalty after the home side were penalised at the breakdown. The Police hit back and almost took the lead a few minutes later as their strong running centre broke the line and was only halted by a covering tackle from Allan which prevented the score. After 10 minutes the Stags increased their lead with a well worked try. Allan started a counter attack from deep. The move was carried on by Petrie and Harvey to take play close to the line. The front row then got involved with McNab and Black held up before Weir was on hand to crash over from close range. Skelton was on target with the conversion. Five minutes later Grangemouth added their second try. From a solid scrum on the home 22 Dempsey cut back on the angle to slice through the defence before stepping the fullback to score under the sticks. Skelton added the easy conversion. The Police had another good spell of possesssion but were unable to break down a solid defensive line from the Stags. On the half hour mark Harvey made good ground from the base of a set scrum and Dempsey was stopped just short of the line. The ball was quickly recycled and moved wide where Clyne joined the line and beat the cover to score. Once again Skelton added the extras. The last few minutes of the half saw the police back on the attack. A kick into the Stags 22 bounced awkwardly for the defenders and the home centre was on hand to collect the loose ball and dive over in the corner for an unconverted score. Then from the kick off the same player made another break and once again he was only halted in the corner by a last gasp tackle from Allan. HT Police 5 Stags 24
The second period saw the Stags dominate possession and territory. After just 2 minutes of the half a turnover saw Hugh make ground to the 22. When the ball was moved wide it was birthday boy Petrie who collected the final pass to slide in at the corner for the score. This time Skelton was unable to add the conversion. Try number 5 was a solo effort from Harvey who crashed through some poor attempted tackles to run in under the posts from 30 metres and leave Skelton a simple kick. As the game entered the final quarter it was the skipper himself who was next on the scoresheet. He darted to the right and cut through the home backline to score in the corner. He was unable to convert his own try. A few minutes later Skelton almost added another score. Some neat interplay by Stangoe and Harvey released the stand off but he knocked on as he dived for the corner. There was enough time left for Dempsey to add 2 further trys to complete his hat trick.First the pack took a scrum against the head and the scrum half jinked his way through the defence for an unconverted score. Then from a scrum on halfway Harvey picked up to feed the scrum half who stepped inside the cover and ran in under the posts. Skelton added the extras. FT Police 5 Stags 53
This was a very comfortable win for the Stags. They defended well, were on top in the scrums and looked dangerous with ball in hand. This week Grangemouth are back in league action as they make the short trip to take on Alloa with KO 3pm.
The seconds had no game last Saturday but will also be back in league action this Saturday as they face Montrose at Glensburgh with KO also 3pm.
The ladies game against kelso was cancelled last Sunday due to a waterlogged pitch. This Sunday the ladies are at home as they take on Livingston with KO 2pm