Unfortunately it wasn’t to be for the boys from New House Farm, but they could be proud to have pushed their opponents so close.
The Home team managed to open the scoring within the first two minutes as their quick footed Scrum Half managed to waltz his way through the centre of the Mets defence. The extra two points were added and the Bulldogs led 6-0.
Bolton were quick to redress the balance when Stand Off Pierce Sherrington
forced his way over to touchdown. Paul Ashton
’s conversion looked good to the travelling fans but the referee waved it away.
Still within the opening 20 minutes, Fitton Hill found themselves 10 metres out from the Mets try line and a neat cross field kick was fumbled and the opposing Centre gleefully placed the ball down over the line.
The game was a real see saw affair and the Mets were the next on the score sheet. Having been moved to Hooker at the start of the season, Adam Ryan
used some neat foot work to score his first try of the day as he jinked past several of the Home players. He quickly followed it up with his second as Pierce Sherrington
’s high bomb, which the Full Back failed to collect, saw Adam Ryan
pounce onto the loose ball and score under the sticks. Paul Ashton
kicked the conversion to give Bolton the lead at 14-10.
An exhilarating first half took a turn for the worse before the break when Second Rower Ross McMahon reacted badly to a high tackle and ended up on the wrong end of a red card. This meant the Mets would have to play the remainder of the game with only 12 men. However, they went into the break with a 14-10 lead and with plenty of confidence.
As had happened in an earlier fixture, the half time break had allowed the Mets to switch off and they were punished with 3 tries from Fitton Hill within the opening 15 minutes of the second period. With the Mets down to 12 men, this meant the Bulldogs always managed to have an extra body out wide and they tied the scores with a try from the Winger. Next up, some poor marker play allowed the elusive Scrum Half time and space to run almost the length of the field down the touchline evading several wannabe tacklers before placing the ball down under the posts. Almost a carbon copy try was scored 5 minutes later when the Scrum Half again cut through the Mets defence. These 3 tries had opened up the score to 26-14 to the Home side and it looked as though Bolton had run out of steam.
The Mets were being cheered on by their travelling fans, and this must have spurred them on as some solid driving by the Bolton forwards Dave Edmondson, John Stryker
and Lee Bennett set the platform for the half backs to spread the ball wide. Centre Andy Roberts
was stopped just before the line, but he managed to get his hands free and deliver a superb offload to supporting Full Back and recent Mets recruit Matt Gladwin
. This was to be the first of two tries for Gladwin as he looks to start his Mets career off on the right foot.
Fitton Hill still had time and the skill to find a long ball out to the right wing and a 30 metre run ended with a try for the Bulldogs. The score now stood at 30-18 with around 10 minutes to go.
was filling in at Scrum Half due to injuries and absentees but he was having a strong game which started the Mets comeback. Bolton became camped down field and with a quick pass from dummy half he found Pierce Sherrington
charging onto the pass and over for another 4 points. With Paul Ashton
off the field, Sherrington stepped up to convert the try.
Entering the final 5 minutes, a great run by Lee Bennett was followed by a break from Pierce Sherrington
who having beaten two defenders passed onto Matt Gladwin
for his second try of the game. Sherrington again added the extra 2 points to tie the game at 30 points each.
It looked as though the 12 men of Bolton had managed to sneak a draw but Fitton Hill converted a drop goal in the final minute to take the 2 points and the win. Bolton looked deflated after their efforts but they could be proud of their performance to come back and tie the game. Captain Mark Dorning
was awarded Man of the Match by the opposition with Adam Ryan
and Klee Bennett runners up. Bolton’s Top Defender was awarded to Adam Ryan
Bolton Mets are away to Crosfields of Warrington next Saturday, 2.30pm Kickoff.