Scar­bor­ough see off Mor­peth

The Scarborough News - - NEWS - BY DAVE CAMP­BELL­ Twit­ter: @camp­bell­rugby

Scar­bor­ough RUFC de­lighted their sup­port­ers with their abil­ity to adapt to life in North One East with a 22-17 home win.

Scar­bor­ough RUFC con­tin­ued to de­light their sup­port­ers with their abil­ity to adapt to life in North One East with a 2217 home win over Mor­peth. They shocked the joint league­lead­ers head­ing into the game with a gritty muck and net­tles per­for­mance at Sil­ver Royd to win an­other close-fought nail­biter and move up to fourth in the North One East stand­ings.

A close-fought bat­tle in the first quar­ter of the game was sur­pris­ingly score­less, although Scar­bor­ough had to rely on some ex­cel­lent de­fence to keep the pow­er­ful North East side at bay.

How­ever, when the vis­i­tors won an at­tack­ing line-out in the Scar­bor­ough half, they drove to the line.

The Seasiders de­fended doggedly, but when scrumhalf Jack El­liott whipped the ball in­field from a ruck, cen­tre Fraser Boldy pow­ered over be­tween the up­rights in the 26th minute and fly-half Ben Hornby added the ex­tras for a 7-0 lead.

Although the try fol­lowed a pe­riod of Mor­peth pres­sure, Scar­bor­ough were none­the­less shocked at the re­verse and came storm­ing back.

Driv­ing play down their right flank ap­peared to have stalled just out­side the vis­i­tors’ 22 when a slick pass from fly-half Tom Rat­cliffe re­leased James Per­rett.

The Aussie full-back stepped on the gas to out-pace the vis­it­ing de­fend­ers and touch­down to the right of the up­rights in the 29th minute.

Rat­cliffe con­verted to level the scores at 7-7.

Skip­per Matty Jones’ men took con­trol and whereas they had strug­gled with their ball re­ten­tion early in the half they now dom­i­nated in mid­field with cen­tres Billy Parker and Matty Young ex­celling.

The Scar­bor­ough pack are a mo­bile unit these days and hard run­ning at the vis­it­ing de­fence by Sam Daw­son, Alexis Core, skip­per Jones and a dy­namic back five be­gan to cre­ate space.

A sear­ing break by Rat­cliffe from just in­side the Mor­peth half saw the big num­ber 10 cut a swath through the vis­it­ing mid­field be­fore ex­e­cut­ing an inch-per­fect grub­ber kick on the run for Per­rett to glide through, gather and score in the 32nd minute.

Rat­cliffe again kicked the ex­tra two for a 14-7 lead.

And the half ended with a fur­ther try on the stroke of half-time when, hav­ing won ruck ball to the right of the up­rights, it was moved swiftly wide and flanker Aaron Wil­son bus­tled through to touch down.

Rat­cliffe missed the touch­line con­ver­sion but Scar­bor­ough led 19-7 at the break.

Although Scar­bor­ough led by three tries to one, the se­cond half promised to be as abra­sive and at­tri­tional as the first and so it turned out to be.

The Seasiders won an early se­cond-half penalty and kicked to touch in the vis­i­tors’ 22 but lost pos­ses­sion from the re­sult­ing line-out.

Words must have been ex­changed in the Mor­peth half-time talk and the Northum­bri­ans looked sharper at the break­down than they had done in the se­cond quar­ter.

In the 50th minute full­back Jake McKay, up in sup­port, crossed for a try Ben Hornby failed to con­vert but it was game-on at 19-12 to the hosts.

An ab­sorb­ing bat­tle en­sued with no quar­ter given or asked for by ei­ther side.

The Seasiders de­fended with gusto and con­cen­tra­tion with half-backs Jor­dan Wake­ham and Rat­cliffe ex­celling and some mas­sive de­fen­sive work by the pack, par­tic­u­larly lock Tom Hicks.

Rat­cliffe kicked a penalty goal in the 59th minute to stretch the lead to 22-12 but 10 points looked by no means to be a win­ning mar­gin with a quar­ter of the game to go.

And fol­low­ing toe-to-toe stuff late in the game, the vis­i­tors even­tu­ally crossed the Scar­bor­ough white­wash at the death, this time winger Sam Hornby touch­ing down.

Brother Ben failed to con­vert and Scar­bor­ough were pulling up the draw­bridge at 22-17.

Mor­peth looked to keep pos­ses­sion from the re-start, as had the ball gone dead, the game would have been over.

How­ever, the vis­it­ing ball car­rier was bun­dled into touch on half­way and Scar­bor­ough had won a game which was com­pul­sive view­ing from start to fin­ish.

North One East is a strong league from top to bot­tom and although their play­ing re­sources are thin, Scar­bor­ough’s young side play for each other with skill and com­mit­ment and their team spirit was pal­pa­ble in a tough, un­com­pro­mis­ing game.

Aaron Wil­son crashes over the Mor­peth white­wash just be­fore half-time in Scar­bor­ough’s 22-17 win at Sil­ver Royd PIC­TURES BY ANDY STAND­ING

Scar­bor­ough’s man of the match Tom Hicks is felled

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