STAFFORD 1st XV returned emptyhanded from their short trip to Tamworth on Saturday.
The outcome was an 11-3 success for the Wigginton Park outfit, who fell behind in the early stages when Stafford’s Nick Oxley kicked a penalty.
Ferocious scrums maintained the Stafford pressure and they remained camped in their opponents’ half for long periods.
Tamworth endured the relentless barrage and a try against the run of play handed them a slender interval advantage.
Stafford started the second half brightly but they lacked the momentum that they had shown in the first period.
Conditions underfoot and bruising encounters took its toll on both teams as the match turned into a fragmented series of exchanges.
A yellow card disrupted play further as Stafford were reduced to 14 players and two Tamworth penalties looked to have killed the game off.
Stafford forced matters in the closing stages, but Tamworth held on to grind out a gruelling Midlands 2 West (North) victory.
Next fixture for Stafford 1st XV is at home to Moseley Oak on Saturday, February 16 (2.15pm).