In what the club hoped to be a glorious day to watch some exciting rugby for our supporters and sponsors turned out to be quite the opposite with the wet conditions making a big impact on the game.
It was the visitors who were on the scoreboard first just seven minutes in after capitalizing on several Ponteland mistakes.
Just 10 minutes later it was Captain Michael Searle who would pull the #MightyMaroons back into the game. After receiving a short pass, the centre crashed his way over the line with brute force to score. Carruthers stepped up and slotted the extra’s.
Further battles in the midfield saw possession being exchanged numerous times before debutant Elliott Trott stepped up the occasion. Displaying his fast feet, he scored a quick brace in four minutes, one off each wing. Looking to slot into a highly skilled back line, the new addition of Trott is something to excite #MightyMaroon supporters.
Bishop Auckland were able to add 3 points through a penalty kick on the stroke of half time and having narrowed the gap, Ponteland were leading by just nine points.
Ponteland RFC 17 – 8 Bishop Auckland
The second half intensity increased with Bishop showing no signs of giving up anytime soon. Their intensions were paused with one of their players being shown a yellow and sent for a 10 minute rest.
The #MightyMaroons made full use of the extra man with hooker Sean Bettison cutting through the Bishop defense and darting 10 metre’s before dotting it down on the line. Once again Carruthers added the extra’s and Ponteland extended their lead to 24 – 8.
The final 30 minutes saw a wet ball become the biggest frustration with Ponteland continuing to cough up possession. After what seemed an endless account of scrums it was Bishop who made their last attempts to steal the game. With two tries and a successful conversion the visitors found themselves trailing only four points behind when heading into the final 10 minutes of play.
But a well drilled #MightyMaroons were able to stop Bishop from scoring anymore and even found themselves extending their own lead with Captain Michael Searle going over for his second of the day. With Searle scoring the try that confirmed the win it also solidified the #MightyMaroons the full five points, keeping them at the top of the league table.
Ponteland RFC 29 – 20 Bishop Burton
Tries: M. Searle (17, 77), E. Trott (34, 38), S. Bettison (46)
Conversions: D. Carruthers 2