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Blues limit the damage

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Rearguard action holds Barnstaple to seven tries in season's defeat number 17

Barnstaple 45 Newbury Blues 0

BLUES produced a battling defensive display but could not avoid going down to their 17th straight defeat of the season.

Three late tries widened the final gap, there was never any real chance of an upset as Barnstaple notched seven tries, including a penalty while Blues' stretched ranks produced two more yellow cards.

A wind-affected game was hardly a classic, although Barnstaple were well ahead after 15 minutes. Winger Will Topps ran through for a simple try that hardly promised much for Blues, and full back Will Spencer's miss-handling of Topps' kick gifted Linford Brock a simple score, both of which were converted by Neil Giddy into the wind.

Blues held until Matt Stronge was sin-binned and Ryan Carter was sent through on the overlap to make it 19-0 at half-time.

With the wind at their backs, Barnstaple might have expected to set off an avalanche of scores, especially after Matt Maher became Newbury's second player to be carded.

A series of scrum offences led to a penalty try midway through the half, and only then did Newbury's resistance crumble as Dan Lee, Luke Berry and Toby Williamson ran in further tries with two conversions completing the scoreline.

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