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Academy edge past Sarries

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

In a game full of running and endeavour, it was two Sam Olver penalties that won it - the Saints unable to convert their superiority into tries and points.


The two sides would have known each other well, having drawn during the Old Albanians tournament a few weeks earlier, and it showed as the opening ten minutes were played out in a stalemate.


By that time however, the Saints youngsters had started to monopolise the possession, Chris Lord and Darrell Dyer making substantial inroads too, but it wasn't until the 21st minute that they would see a return for their efforts - Olver shaking off a drop goal miss to slot a mid-range penalty just moments later.


After the visitors enjoyed a foray into Saints territory, the hosts had another chance moving the ball slickly across the backline, but both sides were struggling to find gaps and defence would remain on top until the break.


As the second-half started the Saints were enjoying yet more ball but like in the first 35, scoring opportunities were hard to come by. Not that Saracens were enjoying much better luck, Harry Morley turned over well after a one-on-one opportunity at Saints full back Will Hooley.


It was Hooley who almost ran in the evening's first try, Jordan Husband exploiting a Saracens gap brilliantly to race clear. A couple of passes later though the slippy ball played its part and Hooley's spill let Saracens off the hook.


The game remained entertaining and in the 56th minute the Saints' lead was doubled by Olver as the visitors struggled to handle more pressure inside their own 22. Saracens fly half Mark Lawrence then missed the chance to cancel out Olver's effort just three minutes later before the Saints were denied what finally looked like a try for crossing.


It mattered little, and though a decent sized crowd were not rewarded with a try, the Academy loss column remained blank for the 2011/12 season.


TIMELINE

18mins SAINTS Miss DG Olver

21mins SAINTS Pen Olver 3-0

HALF-TIME SAINTS 3 SARACENS 0

56mins SAINTS Pen Olver 6-0

58mins SAR Miss pen Lawrence

FULL-TIME SAINTS 6 SARACENS 0