After a compelling victory, which saw Huddersfield extend their unbeaten league run to 22 games, it leaves them seven points away from winning the title and clinching promotion.
Hat-tricks from Elliot Knight and Nick Sharpe and a brace from Brandon Conway helped Huddersfield score 13 tries for the second time this season.
Kristian Sharples, Ben Morrill, Adam Malthouse, Tom Owen and Lewis Bradley also got on the scoresheet.
Stockport defended courageously in the opening 15 minutes to keep the score line pointless. However, after Huddersfield managed their first try of the game after 17 minutes, with Nick Sharpe’s converted try under the posts, the floodgates opened as Huddersfield managed six tries in 13 minutes.
Ben Morrill, broke through the line and passed to Callum Thompson, who offloaded to Elliot Knight who made it 14-0, with Joel Hinchliffe adding the extras.
Conway was free on the left wing to get the third, Sharples dummied Stockport’s full-back to go over under the posts and Morrill got Field’s fifth to make it 33-0
Adam Malthouse, who has been a regular try scorer this season was back amongst the tries, after Field opted for a quick restart which confused the opposition and Malthouse went over.
Head Coach Gareth Lewis was impressed with Morrill, Callum Thompson and Knight’s performances. Lewis said, “Callum Thompson carried well again, him and Ben Morrill made a couple of good line breaks and support around. Sharpey with a hat-trick and Elliot Knight so credit all to them.”
Lewis expected his side to win today, as Stockport are still chasing their first win of the season. Lewis said “It was always going to be tough today, without being disrespectful we knew we were going to win the game, so we were a bit flat in the warm up.”
The second half was a similar story to the first half with Huddersfield getting seven tries. It only took four minutes for Sharpe to get his second try, after a well worked scrum allowed Sharpe to pick up the ball and power over the line. Workman converted to make it 45-0.
Three minutes later, Conway scored arguably the try of the game, after running the length of the field after brushing off two challenges, Lewis praised Conway’s ability, “Although he left a couple out there, if he had given the ball a couple of times, however he’s a very dangerous player but yeah he took it very well.”
Further tries came from, Bradley who crossed over in the corner and after an impressive passage of play Owen broke the line. Then when Field worked the ball from right to left, it left Knight with acres of space to get his second of the game. Sharpe and Knight then grabbed their hat-tricks with the final two tries of the game.
Knight hopes today’s performance is a platform for himself for the remaining four fixtures. Knight said, “I’m glad to have got a hat-trick as I think it’s my first positive game for a while and things can only go upwards from here.”
Despite scoring thirteen tries, Lewis thought his side could have had more, however keeping a clean sheet kept the coach happy. Lewis said “I thought some of our counter attacking tries were very good, we probably left five or six tries out there as well, it would have been nice to have beaten the 87 we scored over there but the big pleasing point was not to concede a point, it’s the second time we’ve done it all season.”
Lewis was full of praise for utility man, Lewis Workman who played in an unfamiliar fly half role, due to Chris Bell being absent and the coach thought Workman played exceptionally. “Lewis Workman was man of the match today, he stepped up in an unfamiliar position to him, I said before the game that he proves his quality by the amount of positions he can play on the wing, full-back, centre, we’ll probably stick him in the front row next week but we’ll see. But I thought he was very impressive, his distribution was good, his kicking game was good and he made a couple of line break, so I thought Lewis was very good today.”
Lewis credited Stockport for there never die attitude, failing to give up against the heavy deficit. Lewis added “The defence held firm in the last ten minutes when they applied a bit of pressure to us. Credit’s due for Stockport for sticking at it, they’ve had some really tough times this season, I think they deserve all the praise, it would be easy to throw the towel in, but I think that’s testament to them.”