Warriors edge closer to home Pro14 semifinal
PRO14 REPORT: Xander Fagerson crashed over to seal a 30-7 bonus-point win for Glasgow Warriors as they retain their place at the summit of the Pro14 Conference A.
Ulster scored the opening try through Rob Herring but Fraser Brown hit back straight away, before tries from Adam Hastings and Tommy Seymour put Warriors on the front foot before the break.
A clinical fourth by Fagerson wrapped up the points and it was a smooth ride in for the Scots as they edge closer to a home semifinal.
It was a rapid start at the Scotstoun as Ulster came flying out of the blocks, making inroads from the off through Jacob Stockdale and Mike Lowry, earning them an early line-out.
The visitors utilised their strength in the pack and Herring peeled off the back of a driving maul line-out to crash over for his seventh try of the Pro14 season.
John Cooney converted but Glasgow didn’t take long to respond.
The Scots chased down a defensive kick to put pressure on Ulster that resulted in a penalty, then scored in similar fashion as their counterparts through Fraser Brown from a driving maul line-out.
Hastings slotted the extras and was the scorer of their next try, bundling over acrobatically after Kyle Steyn exploited a massive gap in the Ulster defence.
The flyhalf hit the post with his conversion, but Glasgow capitalised on the momentum to grab a third try on the stroke of half-time.
After 17 phases picking and going down the centre, the ball was whipped wide and some lightning hands in midfield released Seymour to trot over on the right.
Again, Hastings’ conversion bounced back off the up-right but Warriors went into the break with a 20-7 lead to build on.
The hosts had the bonus-point secured shortly after half-time, Ali Price making ground with a sharp break and offload to Fagerson, who powered over from close range.
Ulster looked to have finally hit back when Stockdale broke the Warriors line and popped brilliant to Luke Marshall, but Seymour dived on the centre from behind as he crossed the line and knocked the ball to the floor.
Hastings nailed his second penalty of the night to make it 30-7 before he left the field and the hosts could see the end in sight.
Ulster were to be denied another agonisingly close chance before the game was up though, as Lyttle demonstrated his electric pace all the way into the corner but couldn’t escape a covering Seymour, whose last-ditch tackle once again stopped the visitors scoring a second.
Glasgow saw out the rest of the match with some dogged defence lead by Jonny Gray, who – on his 100th appearance for the club – was named man of the match for his efforts.
For Glasgow Warriors:
Tries: Brown, Hastings, Seymour, Fagerson
Cons: Hastings 2
Pens: Hastings 2
Glasgow Warriors: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Kyle Steyn, 12 Sam Johnson, 11 Niko Matawalu, 10 Adam Hastings, 9 Ali Price, 8 Matt Fagerson, 7 Chris Fusaro (captain), 6 Adam Ashe, 5 Jonny Gray, 4 Rob Harley, 3 Zander Fagerson, 2 Fraser Brown, 1 Oli Kebble.
Replacements: 16 Grant Stewart, 17 Jamie Bhatti, 18 Siua Halanukonuka, 19 Scott Cummings, 20 Tevita Tameilau, 21 George Horne, 22 Pete Horne, 23 Robbie Nairn.
Ulster: 15 Michael Lowry, 14 Rob Lyttle, 13 Luke Marshall, 12 Stuart McCloskey, 11 Jacob Stockdale, 10 Billy Burns, 9 John Cooney, 8 Marcell Coetzee, 7 Jordi Murphy, 6 Sean Reidy, 5 Kieran Treadwell, 4 Alan O’Connor (captain), 3 Marty Moore, 2 Rob Herring, 1 Eric O’Sullivan.
Replacements: 16 John Andrew, 17 Andy Warwick, 18 Tom O’Toole, 19 Ian Nagle, 20 Matthew Rea, 21 Dave Shanahan, 22 Darren Cave, 23 Angus Kernohan.
Referee: Stuart Berry (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Mike Adamson (Scotland), Ian Kenny (Scotland)
TMO: Charles Samson (Scotland)