Huddersfield YMCA

L 29 - 26



Scarborough - 1st XV

By David Campbell

Simon Smith’s young side continue to hold their own and progress at North One level but against the big, physical sides in this league the difference between a narrow win and defeat in a close game will depend on the consistency of their efforts at the breakdown. With Scarborough leading 21-13 at the break, Huddersfield controlled possession for much of the second half of this game and snatched a late try for a narrow win having been out-scored 4 tries to 2 by the visitors.

Things looked ominous for the Seasiders when ‘YM’ raced to a ten point lead in as many minutes when first inside centre Gavin Stead kicked a penalty awarded for a high tackle after only four minutes then outside centre Tom Clough dived over to score in the 10th minute; Stead added the extras for 10-0.

Scarborough flanker Drew Govier and winger Josh Marshall accidentally clashed heads leading up to the try and had to leave the paddock to be replaced by Ryan Fowler and Matt Lucas respectively.

In common with Scarborough’s opponents in their opening three games Huddersfield had two big carrying centres in Stead and Clough who augmented the efforts of their back row at the breakdown making it difficult for the visitors’ to get their pacey wide players into the game.

However a change of tactics saw fly-half Tom Ratcliffe look to get the ball behind the west Yorkshiremen to win some useful field positions. And from an attacking lineout in the home 22, the ball was won and skipper Matty Jones barged over in the 22nd minute. Ratcliffe converted and the deficit was only three points at 10-7.

A Gavin Stead penalty almost immediately after Jones’s try stretched the YM lead to 13-7 but Scarborough’s pace in possession was upsetting the home side’s rhythm and a slick move down their right flank saw wing Jonty Holloway sprint over in the 31st minute for a 14-13 lead.

Ahead for the first time and with their tails up Scarborough had perhaps their best spell in the game and it came as no surprise when debutant second rower Luke Brown powered over in the 40th minute following sustained pressure and Ratcliffe added the extra two for a 21-13 lead at the break.

Huddersfield YMCA reduced their arrears to 16-21 almost from the restart, Stead slotting a penalty in the 42nd minute. With an injury sidelining replacement Matt Lucas a further re-shuffle saw Alexis Core enter the fray and back row Euan Govier move to the right wing!

YM got their act together and controlled possession in their favour with excellent ball retention; however a Scarborough drive down their right flank took the ball into YM territory and following pressure on the home line, Brown blasted through the tiniest of gaps by the corner flag in the 51st minute to score a spectacular try taking his defending opposite number Kyle Tetley with him. Tom Ratcliffe hit the upright with his conversion attempt but the visitors led 26-16.

With the lion’s share of possession in the fourth quarter Huddersfield chipped away at the visitors’ lead with Stead knocking over penalties in the 61st and 66th minutes to reduce the Scarborough lead to four points at 26-22.

It looked as if YM had scored the winning try in the 73rd minute when winger Kyle Tetley appeared to have grounded in the corner but a massive tackle from Drew Govier caused the winger to put a foot in touch and his effort was ruled out by the referee. However it was only a triumph delayed and following sustained pressure on the Scarborough line, full-back Sam Fletcher spotted a gap and nipped over in the 76th minute. Stead converted for a 29-26 lead.

Scarborough did have a late chance to grab a win but a pass was knocked on with the line at mercy and the chance had gone. YM won the resulting scrum and fly-half Alex Bull pumped the ball into the stand to end a game that could have gone either way.

The Seasiders came away with two bonus points; one for scoring four tries and the other a losing bonus point for finishing within seven points of the winners. Considering the early injuries and further re-shuffles when replacement Matt Lucas also succumbed to injury, it was scant reward for a huge effort from Matty Jones’s men.


Tries: jones, holloway, brown x 2

Conversions: ratcliffe x 3

Huddersfield YMCA

Tries: cough, fletcher

Conversions: stead x 2

Penalties: stead x 5


Scarborough: perrett marshall parker young holloway ratcliffe wakeham cutino dawson jones (capt) brown hicks e.govier d.govier m wilson
Substitutes: core fowler lucas

Scarborough News "Man of the Match": luke brown

Drafted into a second row where both players were men of the match last week, Luke rose to the occasion and topped of a fine debut with two great tries.