LAUNCESTON joint head coach Ian Goldsmith felt his side ‘executed really well’ after returning to winning ways against Exmouth on Saturday in Regional One South West.

The All Blacks ran seven tries against their Devon-based opponents in a 44-5 success, a result that means they’ll finish in the table regardless of what happens in their final game of the season against Ivybridge next weekend.

And Goldsmith who saw his side lose to the top four in successive games – Barnstaple, Brixham, Chew Valley and Devonport Services – was delighted with the response.

He said: “I think there was a touch of anger and frustration from the players as to what’s happened in the last few games, and unfortunately for Exmouth, they took the brunt of that.

“Nobody likes losing, particularly four games in a row, and that was unchartered territory for Ryan and I.”

Launceston’s try-scoring record has been way off the pace compared to the rest of the top four, but Goldsmith was delighted with their output on Saturday.

He said: “All through last week we just worked on the attacking side of the game with our playing patterns and running phases and it paid off.

“Whether that’s a direct correlation or whether the fact it was a bit drier I have no idea, but we executed really well and played some good stuff with a lot of multi-phase play.”

After ending eighth last year, a fifth-placed finish isn’t to be sniffed at, and are guaranteed to have won at least 12 of their 22 games.

Goldsmith said: “I guess that was the sub-plot of the match as we know that if Exmouth had won then they’d have been within a point or even level with us, so it was nice to consolidate that.

“Also, it means we’re guaranteed to finish with more wins than losses, and we haven’t done that at this level for a long, long time, and we still have Ivybridge to go.”

Despite missing plenty of players on Saturday including the likes of Ethan Pearce-Cowley, Lloyd Duke, Adam Collings and Dan Pearce, the players put in a display Goldsmith was proud of.

He said: “George Bone was excellent and deservedly named man of the match, but everybody to a man was bang on.

“Also, having Grav (Tom Sandercock) back at nine helped with the flow of the game and allowed us to play at a pace Exmouth really struggled with.

“We know that they have a really powerful backline, arguably the most powerful in the league, so we knew we had to keep the ball for as long as possible and wear down their forwards.”

Several games recently have been played in far from ideal conditions, but Saturday was a bit different.

Goldsmith said: “When we got there a couple of hours before kick-off, it was lashing it down and it was horrible, but by the time the game started, it was bright and sunny.

“And although there was a breeze down the middle pitch, the fact that it was sunny and dry seemed to lift everybody and make it more enjoyable.”

After such a decent season, several of Launceston’s players have been named in an experimental Cornwall squad for tonight’s Tamar Cup clash against Devon at Ivybridge (7.30pm).

Goldsmith said: “We’re having this week off from training. We’ve got eight boys playing in the Tamar Cup match, and with the seconds have no game on Saturday either, it makes sense for everybody to have a rest before the Ivybridge game and then Barnstaple away in the Papa Johns Cup the week after.”