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Heworth ARLFC

Heworth 20 vs 22 Lock Lane. NCL Premier Division round 13 22/6/24.

In the National Conference League Premier Division Heworth, in what was targeted as a must win game, were dealt a severe blow to their hopes of staying ahead of a number of teams in the lower half of the table after a disjointed display saw them fall to an agonising 22-20 defeat at the hands of basement side Lock Lane at Elmpark Way. The Villagers, following an indifferent first half, trailed 18-10 at the break before a spirited response led to them clawing their way back to within two points with eighteen minutes remaining. Unfortunately despite creating a number of match winning opportunities in a frantic final period a lack of composure proved costly and the visitors held on for a deserved victory.

Lock Lane came out fully intent on causing an upset and went in front after just four minutes with a try by lively full back Lewis Price converted by stand off Calum Butler. The Castleford outfit kept up the pressure and after dominating the opening period they doubled their advantage on 20 minutes when hooker Kyle Jones caught the home defence off guard and dummied his way over direct from acting half back. Butler again added the extras for a 12-0 lead. Five minutes later Heworth responded when substitute forward Tom Clarke proved unstoppable from close range to cross for his first NCL try which was improved by centre Francis Coggle. Things got even better on 32 minutes when an impressive handling movement led to second rower Tyler Craig sending centre George Elliott striding over by the right corner flag for an unconverted score to reduce the deficit to two points. The visitors though regained the initiative just three minutes later when Price crossed for his second touchdown which was goaled by Butler for an 18-10 interval lead.

The Villagers came out for the second half fully aware that the first score could prove vital and with ten minutes gone they did just that when stand off Ben Dent found substitute forward Ben Barnard coming back inside on an angled run to cross under the posts for an excellent try. Coggle added the simple conversion to reduce the deficit to two points. The visitors were once again quick to respond and just five minutes later second rower Tommy Newbould went over for an unconverted score to make it 22-16. The Black and Whites were still not done however and on 62 minutes it was all to play for when a quick shift led to Coggle going over on the left edge to again get them to within two points. The final eighteen minutes was a nerve-jangling affair with each side desperate to prevail it was the Villagers who for a while looked capable of succeeding but as the tension mounted things became increasingly frantic which resulted in scoring opportunities going begging for both teams. Eventually some desperate defending ensured that neither side were able to add to their tally and the visitors returned home with the vital two points.

Francis Coggle was voted Man of the match for Heworth with prop Jonny Payne, Clarke and Barnard in close contention.

The Villagers, who are having to deal with a mounting injury toll which has robbed them of three first choice half backs now face a real dogfight for survival in the remaining nine matches and it doesn't get any easier next week when League leaders West Hull are the visitors to Elmpark Way. (Kick off 2.30p.m.)

Report - Dave Ward


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