Photo Credit – JJW Photography
PORTSMOUTH Dreadnoughts secured a place in the play-offs with their biggest win in the club’s history.
The Hook Lane outfit thrashed Hastings Conquerors 68-0 last Sunday and will now move on to the South Conference play-offs.
Head coach Luke Head-Rapson was delighted with the result but said a win in their final game of the SFC South Two division regular season is what they need to prepare for.
‘I didn’t imagine we would be in this position at the beginning of the season,’ he said.
‘It is fantastic and I am really proud of everyone in the team for the effort they have put in.
‘But reaching the play-offs is only the first step. What we want now is to make some noise and pick up a few wins and push for the final.’
The Dreadnoughts sit second in the division following their win against the Conquerors.
The home side dominated the game with a quick succession of touchdowns in the first quarter.
A 30-yard run from wide receiver Jake Smith got them off the mark before two Dan Thomas runs from the 35-yard line put them ahead by 21-0.
Before the quarter ended, tight end Ash Mallalieu caught the ball while free in the endzone.
With the score at 28-0, the Dreadnoughts pushed ahead in the second quarter with two more touchdowns by running back Will Purkiss and wide receiver John Cowen.
The Dreadnoughts led 42-0 at the break and continued an impressive display with their seventh and eighth touchdowns.
Safety Joe Clulow ran the ball into the endzone from 12 yards while shortly after, quarterback Stu Rees found himself in space to run five yards and score, giving his side a 55-0 lead.
With the clock running down, Cowen caught a 12-yard throw from Rees making it 61-0 before running back Patrick Kanyinda finished the scoring with a 32-yard run.
Head-Rapson is now looking ahead to his side’s game against the Hertfordshire Cheetahs this Sunday at home.
He added: ‘We have got a tough game against Hertfordshire and I expect them to be fired up.
‘Two losses in a row won’t sit well with them and they will come to us wanting to win.
‘We have to make sure our players are aware of how dangerous Hertfordshire are.
‘We cannot underestimate them based on the last result which was a great day out for us and bad day out for them.’
If the Dreadnoughts win, they could find themselves playing at home in their play-off fixture.
Head-Rapson said: ‘This game is so important. It is our chance to secure a home play-off game.
‘If we win and some results go our way we can be at home against someone like Cornwall or East Kent who will have to travel far to us.
‘The game on Sunday is huge for the season and could do wonders for us in our promotion hopes.’