NORTH WALES CRUSADERS returned to winning ways as Anthony Murray’s side put in a dominant display as they ran 50 unanswered points past Hemel Stags.
Whilst Hemel looked to test the Welsh side on numerous occasions, the Crusaders’ defence held strong before the game slipped away from the Stags in the second-half.
North Wales opened the scoring when Ryan Smith put Brad Walker through a gap and the Widnes loanee managed to turn a tackle to ground the ball.
Walker came close to grabbing his second soon after, but he couldn’t get his fingertips to Joe Lyons’ grubber kick.
However, Crusaders did build on their lead as Gavin Conroy picked up the ball from acting half and scooted over in the right corner.
Earl Hurst then made a break down the left flank and had Lyons in support on his inside, but he couldn’t pick out the halfback with a pass and threw it forward.
Hemel had a couple of repeat sets on Crusaders’ line and attempted to force their way over in the left corner. The visitors repelled them on each occasion.
In the final ten minutes before the break, North Wales added their third of the afternoon. After Kenny Baker had won back possession by stripping the ball one-on-one, Joe Bate ran on to a short ball to crash over.
Crusaders started the second half like a house on fire and crossed for two tries in quick succession.
They had numbers out wide and Alex Trumper put Conroy over for his second, before Smith bagged a simple walk-in effort underneath the sticks.
Conroy should have completed his hat-trick soon after, but he couldn’t take in Smith’s pass with the line begging.
North Wales didn’t make the same mistake the next time they attacked, though, as Aaron Moore picked up the ball at acting half and scooted his way past a couple of defenders.
A couple of minutes later, Crusaders scored the try of the day. Lyons spotted space in behind the defence, he drilled in a grubber kick towards the left wing and Hurst collected to dive over in the corner.
Despite Jack Houghton being tackled high, he managed to free the ball and Lewis Fairhurst added North Wales’ eighth of the day.
To round off the victory, Kenny Baker hit a great line to run on to a bullet pass from Karl Ashall on the full-time hooter.