NARROW WIN OVER WATH
By JUST H JOHNSON
Boss eyed kicker miss
Apologies for short report but I had to rely on second hand information, plus I’m away in the sunshine and have better things to do.
Northallerton first team showed great resilience, tenacity and a bit of luck, to overcome a focused Wath upon Dearne at Brompton Lodge by a score of 20-19.
The visitors had the lions share of possession for the first fifteen minutes and were worthy of their 7-0 lead when a burst through the middle of the park was touched down under the posts.
After twenty five minutes North responded with a well worked unconverted try from Jonny Frank out wide.
Just after the half hour mark Wath then found themselves with an extra man out wide to score in the corner.
One minute before the break, North managed to keep the scores close when Frank turned provider for Sam Taylor to score in the corner.
Half time 10-12 to Wath.
Ten minutes into the second half some precise passing from Matthew Marsay and Ashley Rio allowed Franks to score out wide again, which made the kick too difficult for the extra points.
North were now starting to get on top with their fitness coming to the fore thanks mainly to this seasons intense training programme provided by local gym Evolve NCA.
On the hour mark Taylor also bagged his second try of the day courtesy of good forward work and unselfishness from ageing workhorse Simon Manthorpe. From only five yards out flanker Manthorpe could maybe have gone for the line himself but off loaded to the supporting Taylor for another five pointer.
Fifteen minutes from time Wath scored a converted interception try to bring them only one point behind.
With a penalty or drop goal being all the visitors needed for the win, the last few minutes was a very tense and nervous affair for the spectators. North, led by their incandescent captain Frank, kept composed, defended well and frustrated the opposition to right up to the 80th minute when North were penalised for being offside at a ruck. The resulting penalty, seemingly straightforward, fifteen yards out and in front of the posts would have won the game for Wath, but the kicker inexplicably sliced the kick wide and the referee blew for full time with the Wath kicker holding his head in his hands.
Man of the match was awarded to Jonny Frank.
Next week North travel to league leaders Goole for a 3pm kick off.
A Northallerton 2nd/3rds team had a rare outing at home, but were beaten by a well experienced Stockton 2nd/3rd team 12-24.
Norths scorers were Rob Greene and Paul James with a conversion by Gareth Essex.
Gareth Norton was awarded man of the match for setting up both of Norths tries.
Gareth ‘Studley’ Essex was awarded DOD - no surprise there!
Next week North seconds are scheduled to play Heath at home, also with a 3pm kick off.