Liam Brunt was unable to travel, so Tim Robinson brought Kier Gosling off the bench for his first start and that made room for seventeen years old James Clarke to make his debut in the squad. Oli Passmore also made his first start in the squad this season.
The beautiful Dales countryside was rather bleak with an initial drizzle later turning to a continuous downpour. The Greens started the first half facing the elements and the slope. The Dalesmen were quickly out of the blocks with some high tempo rugby that led to a try after only 6 minutes when they drove from a line-out before an inside pass put Oliver Cicognini through a gap to score. Jack Blackney-Edwards added the extras for a 7 points to nil lead.
The home boys continued to press and the lively Sam Gaudie darted through a gap to touchdown unopposed for Blakeney-Edwards to once more add the extra points for a 14 points to nil lead after 15 minutes. The Scunthorpe defence at this point was very patchy with some good hits being interspersed with some sloppy marking and when they did have the ball, protection at the breakdown was not always efficient. To add to their problems, Nick Syddall was sent to the bin after 20 minutes for an alleged high tackle. The Greens did manage to keep their hosts out with some good scrummaging with seven forwards and young Kane Linklater on for the injured Olli Cole. They also managed to contain a couple of line-out drives from close-in.
The home boys did not however relent and following multiple phases they moved the ball to the right wing where a grubber kick through bounced kindly for Oscar Canny to collect and score. Blakeney-Edwards added the extras with an excellent strike. For a 21 points to nil lead after 24 minutes. They collected their bonus point try when the forwards drove over for Chris Walker to get the touchdown. Blakeney-Edwards converted for a 28 points to nil lead after 31 minutes. Scunthorpe once more fell foul of the referee when Nick Dyson was sent to the bin in the 35th minute. The home boys added another, as the game went well into first half added time, when Blakeney-Edwards converted his own try to go into the interval with a comfortable 35 points to nil lead.
Although Scunthorpe now had the elements in their favour, they were still a man down when the second half started. The Dalesmen again began with a high tempo and there was only 5 minutes on the clock when replacement Tom Asejevs crossed. Blakeney Edwards once more struck the conversion for a 42 points to nil lead. A powerful run by home captain George Hedgley led to another score close to the posts and Blakeney-Edwards added the conversion for a decisive 49 points to nil lead after 10 minutes of the second period.
Scunthorpe gradually made the advantage of the elements count and forced the home boys to play from deep in their own half. They got their reward after 14 minutes when the ball was moved wide to the right, for Will Scammell to race in. Paul Cook missed the conversion but it was now all about Scunthorpe and if they could get a try bonus. Things looked promising when on two occasions they came close through their pack until eventually Kane Linklater was the beneficiary of a driving maul after 30 minutes of the second period. Cook added the conversion for a 49 points to 12 score-line. Whilst Scunthorpe came close a couple of times they were unable to make the final penetration of the home defence.
For the travelling support there was some joy when their second string, the Stags, pulled off a great win in a top of the table Yorkshire merit table clash against the Wharfedale seconds by 12 points to 7.
Next Saturday, The Greens entertain Huddersfield at Heslam Park and would like to overturn the one point defeat that they suffered in the reverse fixture, at Huddersfield, with the last kick of the game. Looking at the results of this weekend though, one will see that Huddersfield turned over second in the table Fylde by 32 points to 15 at their ground.
Match Report by Louie Clayton