Pro14: Benetton 22-12 Scarlets
|Pro14: Benetton v Scarlets|
|Benetton: (10) 22|
|Tries: Ioane 3, Zanon Cons: Tebaldi|
|Scarlets: (0) 12|
|Tries: Baldwin, Beirne Cons: D Jones|
Wing Monty Ioane scored a try hat-trick as Benetton beat reigning champions Scarlets with a bonus point in Treviso.
Ioane scored two in the first half - the first after a Johnny McNicholl mistake - and another after the break.
Scarlets hit back through Corey Baldwin, but the hosts' Marco Zanon went over with an almost immediate response.
Irish flanker Tadgh Beirne replied late on for Scarlets, who missed the chance to go top of Conference B.
Instead Leinster ended the weekend top of that table after securing a losing bonus point in defeat at Edinburgh on Friday.
Scarlets were without 13 players on Six Nations duty, 12 with Wales and back-rower John Barclay facing France for Scotland.
However, the visitors had Wales Six Nations squad members James Davies and Ryan Elias.
Benetton were also affected by Italy calls and moved centre and captain Alberto Sgarbi to blind-side flanker.
Scarlets centre Paul Asquith was denied an intercept try by the TMO after being judged to have encroached within 10 metres of a penalty awarded to the hosts.
The deadlock was eventually broken when Marty Banks appeared to take the wrong option with a cross-kick into Scarlets' in-goal area, but McNicholl made the bigger mistake as he dropped the ball for Ioane to pounce.
Ioane had more work to do for his second try, again seizing on a Banks cross-kick from 25 metres out before evading McNicholl.
Scarlets threatened to hit back, but were soon behind their posts as Ioane raced in for his third.
The visitors finally found their scoring touch when replacement Baldwin gathered McNicholl's delicate kick ahead before powering over.
However Benetton hit back almost immediately as they once again broke Scarlets' first line of defence before Zanon took the scoring pass to go over in the corner.
Scarlets' best move of the game produced Beirne's run-in, but their attempts to earn a losing bonus point were denied by Treviso's impressive defence.
Benetton: Luca Sperandio; Andrea Bronzini, Tommaso Iannone, Luca Morisi, Monty Ioane; Marty Banks, Tito Tebaldi; Alberto De Marchi, Tomas Baravalle, Matteo Zanusso, Marco Lazzaroni, Irne Hebst, Alberto Sgarbi (capt), Marco Barbini, Whetu Douglas.
Replacements: Hame Faiva, Cherif Traore, Marco Riccioni, Marco Fuser, Francesco Minto, Giorgio Bronzini, Marco Zanon, Simone Rossi.
Scarlets: Johnny McNicholl; Tom Prydie, Paul Asquith, Steff Hughes (capt), Ioan Nicholas; Dan Jones, Jonathan Evans, Dylan Evans, Ryan Elias, Werner Kruger, Lewis Rawlins, David Bulbring, Tadhg Beirne, James Davies, Will Boyde.
Replacements: Taylor Davies, Rhys Fawcett, Simon Gardiner, Steve Cummins, Josh Macleod, Declan Smith, Corey Baldwin, Tom Williams.
Referee: George Clancy (IRFU)
Assistant referees: Mark Patton (IRFU), Gianluca Gnecchi (FIR)
TMO: Leo Colgan (IRFU)