Beverley 18-12 Clock Face Miners
The Blue and Golds produced their best performance of the season at the Leisure Center to climb off the foot of the table. Indeed, the first 40 minutes was near flawless as they led 18-0 at the break. They then had enough tenacity and spirit to survive a second-half revival by the Merseyside outfit and claim 2 more valuable league points.
Sam French, pleased with the way his young outfit are coping with life in NCL 2 commented ”The first half performance from the group was absolutely outstanding, we completed at over 90% in that first half, and that helped put us in a great position to score some well-worked tries. In the second half we didn’t really kick on again, however, the group showed fantastic character to defend for each other and hold out for a fantastic win which we are ready to take into next week. I couldn’t be more happier.”
Beverley’s first real raid on the visitors line ended with Francis Coggle held up short. However, moments later Coggle was on hand take a pass from Luke Parker, who did well to stay on his feet in heavy traffic and touch down under the posts. Josh Poskitt converted the try in the 13th minute of play.
Soon after, a break from deep in his own half by Luke Parker saw him get a pass away to Josh Poskitt who kicked ahead. The kick went into touch off a Clock Face defender giving the home side a repeat set. They then took full advantage as Casey Hutchinson crashed over a couple of plays later. Josh Poskitt again converted for 12-0 lead after 17 minutes.
The home side were not over-awed by their higher-placed opponents and continued to give the ball plenty of air. Both centers got plenty of ball with James Boughen making a couple of very dangerous first-half breaks.
On the half-hour mark, a strong break from Alex Calvert set up the position for Callum Cone to dart over from dummy half. Josh Poskitt again converting.
The visitors got a little more of the play towards the end of the half and Beverley defended a number of sets well, close to their own line.
The trend continued in the second half together with the penalty count weighing in favour of the visitors. Clock Face hit back with a Karle Hunt try in the 50th minute and in the 52nd-minute second rower Luke Forber broke from deep in his own half to score. Jack Highcock converted both tries and it was all to play for at 18-12.
With the home side getting the jitters things needed to calm down. Some steadying runs out of defence, particularly from Sam Roe and man of the match Bobby Howdle helped to steady the ship and gain valuable yardage.
One kick on the last tackle in the 65th minute did see Jonny Norman regather and go close to scoring. This was before the game boiled over a little as decisions went the way of the visitors. Lewis Poskitt was sin-binned for dissent. Unusually, there were no linesman available for this NCL fixture which made refereeing difficult.
Beverley did well to defend a number of sets close to their line, with a player short, in the closing minutes. Lewis Poskitt returned shortly before the end and Sam Roe nearly put the game beyond doubt with a barnstorming run which saw him pulled up a few feet short.
The hosts hung on through 6 minutes of stoppage time to claim the win.