Fax get points on the board against Swinton

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Halifax bolstered their top four aspirations with two much-needed Championship points as they defeated Swinton Lions 38-28 at the Shay.

Richard Marshall’s side, in the game for long spells at title favourites Hull KR last week, never really looked in trouble against John Duffy’s fleetfooted attacking team.

But equally they never really looked like capitalising on long periods of dominance in the middle of the field.

It was the visitors who took the early lead, Chris Hankinson kicking a penalty after three minutes to put the Lions 2-0 up.

But Fax’s response was swift, some quick play down the middle paving the way for Ben Johnston’s grubber kick and centre Steve Tyrer just getting there to score before it rolled dead.

Tyrer missed the conversion, but was on target at the end of the next set of six after Adam Tangata charged over from a Jacob Fairbank offload, giving the home side a 10-2 advantage.

Swinton replied through Benjamin White, who stepped inside young Chester Butler a little bit too easily, to cut the gap to 10-6, but Fax went further ahead when James Saltonstall scored the easiest of tries after Swinton allowed Scott Murrell’s cross kick to bounce.

Tyrer kicked the goal from the sideline for a 16-6 lead, but Swinton were in through Michael Butt straight from the restart, Hankinson’s kick putting things back in the balance at 16-12 on the half hour.

But an Elliot Morris try, the young prop bouncing off defenders to score by the posts, was converted by Tyrer, who added a penalty on the final play of the half after Saltonstall had been hit late.

The first score of the second half was crucial, and it went Fax’s way, Shane Grady racing on to Johnston’s short kick to score, Tyrer’s conversion putting the home side 30-12 in front.

Swinton grabbed a reply, against the run of play, when Atkin scored with 27 minutes to go and Hankinson cut the gap to 30-18, the Lions had a lifeline.

Tyrer added a penalty before a Jacob Fairbank try, converted by Tyrer, finally took Fax clear at 38-18 with a little over 10 minutes to go.

Hankinson scored again in the closing stages, before Butt touched down in the final minute, but it was never more than consolation as the Lions finished well beaten.

Halifax: Sharp; Saltonstall, Tyrer, Butler, Evalds; Murrell, Johnston; Tangata, Kaye, Cahalane, Grady, Grix, Fairbank. Subs: Lannon, Morris, Wilkinson, Boyle

Swinton: Murphy; Robinson, Hankinson, White, Butt; Gore, Atkin; Bracek, Nicholson, Austin, Dwyer, Thornley, Lever. Subs: Kenny, Bate, Barlow, Davies

Referee: C. Straw