Ruthless Raiders put Oxford to the sword
BARROW Raiders warmed up nicely for next week’s Cumbrian League One showdown at Whitehaven with a comprehensive 80-10 win over Oxford at Craven Park on Saturday.
A first half Eze Harper hat-trick – including a 95 metre interception – was included in a match which saw Barrow score 14 tries and Lewis Charnock kick 12 conversions.
Leading 56-0 at the break, the scoreline was always too much for the visitors whose only pockets of resistance arrived in the second half.
Barrow did concede two Oxford tries through Harrison Brough and Harvey Burnett, who was also on target with the subsequent conversion.
But once the Raiders reorganised following a melee between the teams, which saw red cards for Matty While and Oxford’s Jordan Siddons, they slipped into gear once again to run out comfortable winners.
Back rower Danny Morrow led the point a minute spree with just two minutes on the clock.
They streaked ahead with further tries from Brad Marwood, Harper, Jamie Dallimore, Shane and DanToal, and Ryan Johnston to ensure there would be no second-half comeback from the side who Barrow had earlier defeated in the League One Cup semi-finals.
The success of Barrow was built on a solid performance from the pack, notably Joe Bullock and Oliver Wilkes, and they were suitably rewarded for their efforts with both touching down in the second half with other tries coming from Brett Carter and Tom Walker.
Raiders coach Paul Crarey had made a number of changes from last week, giving starting roles to Johnston, Harper, Marwood, and Morrow, all of whom impressed for the team.
Barrow now begin the build up for the final game of this phase before the Super Eights start, and a win at arch Cumbrian rivals Whitehaven will see them end up as top dogs in the county.
The Raiders have lost just a single League One game this season, at Toronto, and they have drawn at Doncaster, and Crarey will be keen to maintain that great record provided by his squad.
BARROW RAIDERS: Ryan Johnston, Brett Carter, Jarrad Stack, Eze Harper, Shane Toal, Jamie Dallimore, Lewis Charnock, Joe Bullock, Brad Marwood, Oliver Wilkes, Danny Morrow, Bradd Crellin, Dan Toal. Subs (all used): Dan Abram, Matty While, Tom Walker, James Duerden.
OXFORD: Liam Kay, Kane Riley, Thomas Newbould, William Cooke, Harrison Brough, Callum Windley, Kieran Hyde, Stuart Biscomb, Casey Canterbury, Jonathon Payne, Jordan Siddons, Harvey Burnett, Thomas Alexander. Subs (all used): Francis Welsh, Marcus Brooker, Bradley Moules, Aaron Nicholson.
Referee: J McMullen.