Super League: St Helens maintain dominance over Warrington Wolves
Last Updated: March 8, 2013 11:18pm
Tony Puletua tries to break through the Warrington defence
St Helens won for the 14th time in 15 visits to the Halliwell Jones Stadium, producing their best display of the season to beat Warrington 22-10.
Saints' victory was based on superb smothering defence as they never allowed the Wolves to find any sort of rhythm with ball in hand.
Warrington made plenty of errors, but almost all were forced by ferocious St Helens pressure as they slumped to a second successive defeat.
Saints made a fast start as they responded to last week's humbling by Leeds in emphatic fashion.
A neat offload by Jonny Lomax put Jordan Turner in at the corner, and although the full-back missed the conversion, he made no mistake on 10 minutes after Lance Hoaia's dummy and drop of the shoulder took the Kiwi in by the sticks.
Warrington paid the price for five handling errors in the opening quarter as Saints once again proved clinical on 19 minutes, Lomax' looping ball to Francis Meli giving the winger the chance to demonstrate superb finishing skills with a one-handed try in the corner.
There was a hint of panic in Warrington's attacks as first Brett Hodgson hurried a pass beneath the Saints posts and knocked on, then Richie Myler fired out a poor pass to Chris Riley which the winger could only knock on.
But with a minute left in the half, Warringon finally crossed following a knock-on by Jordan Turner. From the scrum the ball was quickly shipped wide and Chris Bridge glided in at the corner, although Brett Hodgson could not add the extras.
The second half developed into an arm-wrestle as both sides pounded away in attack and defended equally fiercely, so it was little surprise when Lomax pushed the score out to 16-4 with a penalty after a high shot on James Roby.
And it was the Saints hooker who settled the contest 10 minutes later, seizing on Chris Hill's attempted offload to steal the ball and race in under the sticks.
Bridge crossed for his second try in the closing moments after Myler finally managed to break through the defensive line, but this was definitely Saints' night.