Two tries not enough for Connacht
Scarlets 25 Connacht 15
Fly-half Owen Williams kicked 20 points as the Scarlets sealed a RaboDirect Pro12 victory over Connacht at Parc y Scarlets.
Lock Joe Snyman scored the Scarlets only try – his first try for the region.
But the Welsh side found themselves out-scored two tries to one by Connacht who were indebted to scores from wing Daniel Poolman and lock Mike Swift at either end of the contest.
Josh Turnbull was included after being released by Wales from Six Nations duty.
Kyle Tonetti made his first start for the western province this season following a lengthy battle with injury.
Connacht enjoyed a dramatic start with Poolman going over in the right corner after only 29 seconds latching on to fly-half Dan Parks’ accurate cross kick. Parks missed the conversion.
But following a break by centre Adam Warren the Scarlets got on to the scoreboard with a penalty from Owen Williams on five minutes.
Parks had the chance to restore his side’s five-point lead but his 45-metre penalty shot rebounded off the right post.
After soaking up a spell of pressure the Scarlets earned themselves a penalty which Williams kicked on 20 minutes to give the region a 6-5 lead.
But from Connacht’s next attack Parks slotted over a drop goal to regain the lead.
The lead changed hands for a third time with Williams landing his third penalty following a Connacht ruck offence, just before Parks missed a long penalty shot.
But Parks’ opposite number Williams converted one of two injury-time penalty attempts to give the Scarlets a 12-8 half-time lead.
The Scarlets eventually put some daylight between them and Connacht scoring 10 unanswered points.
First Snyman crashed over for a try converted by Williams, who then landed his fifth penalty as the region led 22-8. Before he left the fray Williams converted his sixth penalty.
But four minutes from time Connacht had the final say when replacement lock Mike Swift crashed over for a try converted by Miah Nikora.
But it was too little, too late although they did have the consolation of knowing they had out-scored the Scarlets two tries to one.