National Three North
Sandal 25 Bradford & Bingley 45
TWO tries in the latter stages helped Bradford and Bingley to a derby success at Sandal.
The visitors took a 12-3 lead following a try and a conversion from winger Gavin Stead and a touchdown by full-back Benny Greaves.
However, the hosts came back strongly to lead at half-time, scoring some excellent tries along the way.
Fly-half Greg Wood added to his penalty with seven points from a delightful chip and gather before winger Steph Ligg took advantage of some neat play to get away from 40 metres.
Things were looking bright for Sandal after the break when they extended their advantage to 20-12, winger Jake Mulhern adding a third try.
Bradford used their strength up front to pull themselves back, winger Giles Hetherington producing a converted try before scrum-half Richard Skull went over off the back of a scrum, fly-half Tom Bills taking over kicking duty to make it 26-20.
That became 31-20 when Hetherington picked up his second try, only for the advantage to be chalked off when Mulhern gathered a chip to the corner to leave Sandal only six points behind.
The game was effectively killed off, though, with an interception try by Bills, who converted from the touchline. A pushover try by No 8 Stewart Brewer, converted by Bills, completed the scoring.
Penrith 52 Morley 3
MORLEY crashed to a heavy defeat at Penrith after conceding six second-half tries.
Despite sitting second from bottom, Morley had shown a recent improvement. However, a fairly even first period was replaced by an abject second-half display as visiting heads dropped.
Penrith had a couple of tries and a conversion in the opening half-hour but Morley hit back with a penalty from Simon Bradshaw.
With the wind in the Maroons’ sails before the interval a second shot at goal was turned down in favour of a kick to the corner and a catch-and-drive.
The resultant quest for a try was unsuccessful and the half-time whistle went.
As a result, two tries and another conversion in the opening 10 minutes of the second period meant the game was effectively over.
As legs grew weary and spirits dropped, it was virtually one-way traffic, with Penrith adding four more converted tries, the last conversion heralding the final whistle and bringing to an end Morley’s misery.
Beverley 20 Darlington MP 22
A THRILLING encounter ended in heartbreaking fashion for Beverley as fly-half Phil Duboulay’s conversion attempt from the touchline to level the scores fell just the wrong side of the crossbar after bouncing off the post.
Runaway league leaders Darlington were 14-0 up after only 10 minutes through tries by flanker Luke Wisnowski and centre Chris Peace both converted by fly-half Tom Hodgson.
Beverley responded with a try by flanker Tom Moody which Dubouloy converted and the game developed into a close and hard-fought struggle.
Hodgson and Duboulay exchanged penalties before Beverley reduced the lead to 17-15 on the stroke of half-time with a try by winger Ben Johnson which Duboulay converted.
The second half was evenly fought until Darlington increased their lead with a try by winger Chris McKurk, who raced over to touch down his own quickly taken penalty and kick ahead.
Beverley had all the late play but were unable to penetrate some solid defending.
Their reward eventually came in the last minute when Johnson crossed for his second try, leaving Duboulay with a difficult and unsuccessful conversion attempt to secure the draw.