Stanley under 12’s first game of competitive rugby ended in a narrow loss after dominating for most of the match in their 2nd round tie of the yorkshire BARLA cup.
The game started with Shawcross kicking off to Stanley. The first few sets saw both teams applying pressure with strong defence. Shawcross were the first to benefit from this, forcing an error which gave them some good field position but Stanley’s defence held firm and they weathered the storm and started getting themselves into the right areas of the field. Midway through the first half Stanley, through some strong running from the forwards and some smart kicking from the half backs had a spell of repeat sets on the Shawcross line. This finally paid off when Zack Leaworthy threw a dummy and accelerated through the gap to score. Unfortunately the goal attempt missed which left a minute to play out before half time.
The 2nd half started well for Stanley as they retrieved position straight from the kick off and were soon into good field position. This would be how most of the 2nd half would go, with Stanley playing the game in the Shawcross half and Shawcross struggling to get out of their own territory and having to rely on kicks to try and find field position. From one of those kicks came the turning point of the game, when James Astin retrieved the ball and broke clear and looked all on to score before one of the Shawcross players managed to make a last ditch ankle tap forcing the Stanley man's foot to slip into touch. With 5 minutes or so of the game remaining Shawcross finally got into the Stanley half and realising they were unlikely to break down Stanley’s solid defence they resorted to a little chip over the top and the chasing player took the ball after a nice bounce and raced over for a try which they converted to take a 6-4 lead. Stanley never threw in the towel and battled to the end and even though they forced the errors needed to get the ball back in good areas they couldn’t find a way through the Shawcross defence.
The lads came off the pitch obviously disappointed but with their heads held high after a strong team performance.
Stanley’s awards went to:
Parents - team award
Oppositions - Zack Leaworthy
Top tackler - Ewan Molyneux
Players - Jayden Walker
Coaches - Jayden Walker
Thank you to all of you, that turned up in support it was good to see people from other teams shouting the boys on.