Brods 21 Malton & Norton 19
Evening Courier Report
BRODS dug themselves out a huge hole in their penultimate home match of the season in Yorkshire One.
Trailing 19-0 at half time, the faltering leaders looked set to finally blow their title hopes. However, they showed commendable determination to hit back and snatch victory through Matt Hoyle with 10 minutes left.
Quite how Brods got themselves into such a mess in the first place was hard to fathom as they dominated territorially against wind and slope.
Despite being hit by the late withdrawals of Adam Standeven (knee) and 'Doc' Holbrough (working), they controlled play in the early stages but were rocked when the visitors scored two tries in four minutes midway through the first half.
Malton engineered an overlap on the left for winger James Dempsey to cross and then produced three successive off-loads in the tackle for prop Adam Turnbull to go over, Ian Cooke's conversion making it 0-12.
Individual errors and aimless passes were hurting Brods and they were under pressure in the scrums.
Things went from bad to worse three minutes before the interval when they shot themselves in the foot. The ball went to ground just inside the Brods half, struck Ollie Hawkins on the head from an attempted hack forward and Cooke cashed in on a wrong-footed defence to score and add the goal.
The sin binning of lock Tom Hanson for dissent added to the home woes.
Ollie Akroyd had reduced the deficit with two penalties by the time Hanson returned on 46 minutes and Malton lock Duncan Foster was then yellow carded for preventing Brods from getting the ball away at the back of a ruck.
A superb try from stand-in scrum half Joe Baker, after fine work from powerful No 8 Luke Scrimshaw, Ben Hoyle and Nick O'Connor, on 49 minutes enabled Akroyd to reduce the deficit to six points with the conversion.
An Akroyd penalty on 63 minutes made it 16-19.
Prop Callum Thompson was held up over the try line before Matt Hoyle, who had scored four tries the previous week against Glossop, cantered over wide on the left for the clinching score. Akroyd's kick hit an upright.
Chasing pair Bridlington and Bradford Salem both won and O'Connor said: "We are treading a fine line and this was a crucial win in the grand scheme of things."