First Utility Super League: Warrington Wolves beat Catalan Dragons
Last Updated: 09/05/14 10:08pm
Joel Monaghan: two first-half tries
Warrington got their season back on track in emphatic style as they crushed Catalan Dragons 42-10 at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.
Last season's Grand Finalists had lost six of 11 Super League games coming into this contest, their season reaching a nadir last week with defeat to lowly Bradford.
By contrast Catalan had won their last five league games but are notoriously bad travellers and failed to provide Warrington with any sort of a contest.
Winger Joel Monaghan scored two first-half tries, while Anthony England and Stefan Ratchford also crossed, as Warrington built up a 24-0 half-time lead.
Chris Bridge scored almost immediately after the re-start and Mickey Higham and James Laithwaite added further scores, before Vincent Duport and Morgan Escare scored late tries to at least gave the travelling support something to cheer.
The start of the contest was riddled with poor handling. Wolves prop England dropped the very first pass of the match from the kick-off - and that set the tone for an opening 10 minutes which saw both sides guilty of numerous handling errors.
The Dragons came close to opening the scoring after 14 minutes with the first significant chance of the game, but winger Michael Oldfield was denied a try in the corner when Rhys Evans tackled him into touch.
The French side were made to pay for that missed opportunity three minutes later when Joel Monaghan opened the scoring - his 100th try for the Wolves coming in his 100th appearance - with Bridge converting.
It got better for the home side three minutes later when they extended their lead with a scrappy try which saw Michael Monaghan's pass deflect off Catalan forward Jason Baitieri and England was on hand to pick up the loose ball and touch down for a simple try. Bridge again converted to make it 12-0.
The Wolves took a stranglehold on the game with a superb third try which saw full back Matty Russell break from deep, Ormsby carried on the move and his inside pass allowed Joel Monaghan to claim his second try of the night.
Five minutes before half-time Ratchford scored a fine individual try as he stepped through a tired Catalan defence and Bridge maintained his 100 per cent record with the boot to give Warrington a commanding 24-0 advantage.
It took the home side less than a minute after the restart to increase their lead when Ben Evans charged down Barthau's kick and James Laithwaite scooped up the loose ball to send Bridge racing clear to score.
There was no respite for the Dragons as four minutes later a superb midfield break by prop Chris Hill saw the supporting Micky Higham take his pass and sprint clear to touch down, with Bridge adding both conversions.
Laithwaite claimed Warrington's seventh try of the night before Catalan finally got on the scoreboard on 65 minutes with Duport's try - which Barthau converted.
The visitors also claimed a last minute try through Escare - but it was little consolation for the well-beaten French side.