The Bulldogs took to the road again this time to take on the Dragons of Eastmoor and whilst they returned undefeated they had to share the spoils in a hard fought 14-14 draw. That was enough to maintain top spot in Division 2 at the halfway point of the regular season.
Siddal 7 11
Eastmoor Dragons 6 8
Batley Boys 7 7
Hunslet Warriors 7 7
Dewsbury Celtic 7 7
Newsome Panthers 7 6
Oulton Raiders 6 5
Heworth 7 3
Whilst they may been a bit disappointed not to have come home with a victory Eastmoor is a tough place to go and to get anything is an achievement.
Once again the boys started well enough taking well deserved 10-0 lead with the opening try from Captain James Ainley
converted by Keelan Foster
. In only his second game Ben Schofield scored a superb second try beating numerous Dragon defenders. Eastmoor hit back with tries either side of the break to level the scores at 10-10 before Sam Smith
restored the Bulldogs lead in typical fashion. Once again Siddal were unable to keep The Dragons at bay as they managed to score another equalising try.
The match finished somewhat farcically as the referee blew early following an Eastmoor player refusing to leave the pitch following a sin binning with the same player seemingly hell bent on starting a fightafter the game. Nevertheless it was a good game with both teams having opportunities to win the game though neither side were particularly helped by some strange refereeing decisions. The game also saw a debut for Brandon St Catherine who looks another fine prospect. Phillip Tatterstall
ran strongly and gained good ground throughout the game capably backed up by Alex MacFarlane Alfie McGreevy Connor Murphy
and Mattaus Varin. James Ainley
lead from the front with some fierce tackling as did Jacob Tansey
who picked up the Top Tackler Award for several superb tackles. Ben Scholefield
picked up the Runner Up Man of the Match Award for his telling contribution from full back in only his second appearance. Phillip Tatterstall
picked up both the Man of the Match Award and Opposition Man of the Match Award for his efforts.
Overall a good performance from the whole squad. For the second week running the boys let a decent lead slip and the coaches will be looking again at squad size and number of interchanges to see what effect these changes are having. However, the boys didn't let their heads drop despite being pegged back twice. Line speed remains an issue but will improve.
At the halfway point in the season no less than 12 players have picked up points for Man of the Match or Top Tackler emphasising what an all round team performance it has been thus far. The squad assembled has to be one of the strongest around and will get stronger as the hard work being put in on the training pitch starts to show and the boys get more used to playing with each other.