Cougars turn on style in second-half display

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Keighley produced a second-half masterclass to destroy Oxford and remain level on points with League One leaders Oldham with a game in hand.

Paul March’s side were below par during a first half in which they established a 16-10 lead but they turned on the style after the break.

Oxford led inside the opening minute through Sean Morris before the hosts replied through Andy Gabriel and then Paul White put them ahead.

Oxford’s defence fell to sleep minutes before the interval to allow player-coach March to scoot over from close range.

The visitors replied through Aaron Jones-Bishop’s fine effort to make it 16-10 at the break before rain worsened conditions in the second half.

Two minutes after the restart, Josh Lynam scored for Keighley and then Rikki Sheriffe touched down to score.

Marcus Brooker pounced on Jesse Sheriffe’s spill for the visitors’ only score of the second half.

Lightning then appeared to strike the Danny Jones Stand and the match commissioner temporarily took the players from the field.

Ash Lindsay managed to squeeze through the tightest of gaps to get over next to the posts to end the game as a contest before Hamish Barnes marked his return to the first team with a try from Paul Handforth’s pass.

On the hooter, White grabbed his second of the afternoon as he dived over in the corner.

Keighley: J. Sheriffe, Gabriel, Barnes, R. Sheriffe, White, Brook, Handforth, Law, Feather, Rawlins, Lynam, Pursglove, Lindsay. Substitutes: D. March, Bailey, P. March, Tahraoui.

Oxford: S. Morris, Matthews, Brooker, Hoggins, Jones-Bishop, Thomas, Kittrick, Evans, Kitson, Danns, Walton, Kaufman, Withington. Substitutes: T. Davies, Barlow, Palser-Thorne, S. Scott.

Referee: T Grant (RFL).