Match Stats - Fix Info
Match Page 2017-18 - Summary
Saracens ran in nine tries in a 63-13 victory against Northampton Saints at Franklin’s Gardens to tighten their grip on second place in the Aviva Premiership.
Following Wasps’ defeat to Sale Sharks on Friday night, Mark McCall’s side showed their class in a dominant second-half performance against the hosts.
Saints appeared capable of pulling off an upset at half-time as they went into the break just two points behind, but seven unanswered tries saw Saracens claim a dominant win.
The hosts started the better of the two teams and almost opened the scoring when Teimana Harrison, back in the side following a one-game ban, spilled a looping pass five metres out with the line beckoning.
Saracens cleared their lines and punished the hosts soon after as quick hands released Sean Maitland down the right, before he found Alex Lozowski on the inside to cross the whitewash.
Owen Farrell converted and then gave Saints an opportunity to get on the scoreboard, which Stephen Myler gratefully received, with a high hit on Jacobus Reinach.
The England international did not take long to make up for his error, though, converting a successful penalty after the hosts were penalised for an infringement at the lineout.
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Saints responded with their first try of the game as Reece Marshall peeled off the back of a maul and dotted down, with Myler converting to tie the scores.
With their tails up, Northampton took the lead for the first time with another Myler penalty after Saracens were adjudged offside at the ruck.
But just as the hosts looked to have all the momentum, on-loan back-rower Blair Cowan, on his first start for Saracens, stole the ball and got the visitors back on the front foot.
A penalty allowed Farrell to kick for touch before Schalk Brits reclaimed his accurate lineout ball from the back of the maul and crashed over the line.
Saracens were even more ruthless after the interval and after having an early effort chalked off by the TMO, they touched down twice in five minutes to grab the game by the scruff of the neck.
A relentless driving maul was capitalised on by Ben Spencer for the visitors’ third try, before Mako Vunipola claimed the bonus-point following multiple phases from the forwards.
Farrell slammed home Saracens’ advantage by converting the Vunipola’s effort and added a further three points after Saints were pinged for offside.
It then went from bad to worse for Saints as they leaked three more tries as Saracens began to run riot, with Farrell’s chip through to Liam Williams securing their fifth try.
Chris Wyles and Maitland also got in on the act to extend Saracens’ lead to 51-13, before Jackson Wray and Nathan Earle poured more misery on the hosts with two further scores in the closing minutes to cut the gap on Exeter Chiefs at the top.