Frankie Herne and JW Bell scored two tries apiece to help the high-flying Pumas consolidate their position at the top of the Absa Currie Cup First Division standings with a comprehensive 60-20 (22-13) victory over the SWD Eagles at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit on Saturday.
The hosts scored nine tries in total, including three in a final seven-minute burst, with flyhalf Carl Bezuidenhout landing 20 points on his own.
Victory ensured the Mpumalanga outfit made it five wins from five to move onto 22 log points, five clear of closest rivals the Leopards, while the Eagles stayed fourth.
The visitors had made the stronger start and they were in the contest for close to an hour.
An early penalty from fullback Justin van Staden put them ahead, before Herne crossed for his first try in the fifth minute.
But the Eagles were back ahead before the end of the first quarter when prop Roy Godfrey crossed for their first try.
Further scores by Bezuidenhout and flanker Herne helped the home team retake the lead, which had reached nine points by the interval.
The first points of the second half took over 10 minutes to arrive as big lock Giant Mtyanda went in for the Pumas.
However, a converted try by visiting winger Alshaun Bock cut the deficit to just seven and it remained that way until replacement hooker Vincent Koch broke free to score on the hour for the hosts, who then put the foot down in the final quarter.
Winger Bell crossed the whitewash for the first of his double four minutes later, before adding another in the 74th minute.
Number eight RW Kember and lock Eduan van der Walt then rubbed salt into the wound of the Eagles to cap a solid win.
Pumas – Tries: Frankie Herne (2), Carl Bezuidenhout, Giant Mtyanda, Vincent Koch, JW Bell (2), RW Kember, Eduan van der Walt. Conversions: Bezuidenhout (6). Penalty: Bezuidenhout.
SWD Eagles – Tries: Roy Godfrey, Alshaun Bock. Conversions: Justin van Staden (2). Penalties: Justin van Staden (2).
Source: S A Rugby