The One That Got Away
After a superb victory at home last time out, Fleetwood came looking for their first away win of the season against Tarleton.
Fleetwood started the game with a nudge by Karl Bowling, and after a strong chase, Fleetwood turned the ball over but soon knocked on. Tarleton kicked up field to relieve the pressure. Kris Phillips passed to Alex Ogden, and he kicked to touch. Great option found by Oggy. Tarleton decided to kick and chase up field, but good back peddling by Kris stopped the try, a huge let off for Fleetwood. Fleetwood won a penalty, but Gavin hit the upright from 40 metres out. Tarleton cleared their lines, and a few phases later, Fleetwood gave a penalty away for offside. Tarleton kicked to touch, won the line out and drove through the middle, try scored. Fortunately for ‘Fleet’, Tarleton missed the conversion. A little while later, Brad Stapleton broke the first tackle, and then coasted home, running 50 metres to score towards the right side of the pitch. The conversion was missed, 5-5. Fleetwood won a penalty from a scrum. The penalty kick was scored by Gavin Rowell. Fleetwood lead for the first time in the game, 5-8. After Fleetwood won quick scrum, the ball was shipped out by Bamby . Karl ran at the defence and broke the line. He outstripped the Tarleton defence with a 70 metre dash scoring the try of the match. Gavin kicked the conversion, 5-15. ‘Fleet’ won a penalty on their 22, kicked to touch and then won another penalty converted by Gavin which increased Fleetwood’s lead, 5-18. A dubious offside was given against Fleetwood. Tarleton kicked to touch and from a rolling maul, Tarleton scored. The conversion made the half time score 12-18.
The second half started with a short kick off by Tarleton, Fleetwood were able to gradually gain ground from the off. However they conceded a penalty. Thankfully, Karl was able to turn the ball over, and he regained the ground Fleetwood lost. During a Tarleton maul close to the Fleetwood try line, ‘Fleet’ entered the maul via the incorrect side. Tarleton decided to have a scrum and they won their own ball. The Tarleton 8 picked and a few phases later, they scored under the posts. The easy conversion was scored, 19-18. After a wave of Tarleton attacks, Fleetwood couldn’t defend against it, and Tarleton managed to score. Tarleton missed the conversion, 24-18. Tarleton win a line-out on the Fleetwood five metre line, ‘Fleet’ then concede from it. The conversion was scored, 31-18. A Fleetwood penalty saw Karl break through the Tarleton defensive line and he comfortably scored. The conversion was missed, 31-23. Fleetwood conceded a penalty due to kicking the ball forward in a ruck. A clean kick by Tarleton through the middle of the posts extended their lead by an extra three points, 34-23. Fleetwood thought they had scored with a close pass and run through the middle, but the pass was just forward. Fleetwood gained another penalty. James Lilley showed great awareness with a quick tap, and a great score. Gavin kicked the conversion, score 34-30. The fighting spirit of the whole team pulled us back from the brink. That try earned us two league points. One a losing bonus point for being within 7 points of Tarleton and one for four tries scored. Full time, Tarleton 34, Fleetwood 30.
Fleetwood showed class at times against Tarleton. After a strong first half the first 30 minutes of the second were dominated by Tarleton, assisted by injuries to key Fleetwood players and disruptive rearrangement of the team. In the final 10 minutes Fleetwood again showed what they are able to do. Another few minutes and maybe Fleet could have won this game. Congratulations to Tarleton who showed real character to come from 18-5 down to lead 31-18 with 5 minutes to go. We look forward to the rematch on 5th Jan.
This was the one that got away.
Man of the match was awarded to Ricky Newton for carrying the ball well and looking for work constantly throughout the game.