The finest of Margins!
By Mike Malley
Poor game management costs the u15's as they fail to see out a game with the finishing line in sight.
Despite torrential rain in the 48 hours leading up to this morning, the sand based pitch was in excellent shape, in sunny conditions the only weather based issue was the wind blowing in off the sea which really caused issues for both sides. We played 4 x 15 minute quarters and in the opening 15 minutes the forwards really struggled to compete with the Waterloo ruck, somehow we still managed to dominate in terms of territory and kept play deep in the Waterloo half. After a period of pressure we forced an error and from the resulting penalty Leo tapped and went over to score in the corner from 5 metres out.
In the second quarter Waterloo's dominance in the ruck area started to give them territory, some superb tackling from Warrington slowed them down but it was to easy for Waterloo around the breakdown and they slowly ate up the yards ending up on our line. Our defence was excellent but it was only a matter of time before the line was breached, they converted in front of the posts and 2 minutes later extended the lead when an overlap took them in at the corner.
In the third quarter the backs showed some good hands throwing the ball about a bit and leo scored his second try under the posts following a nice bit of interplay. Jack B kicked the conversion which wasn't an easy job in the windy conditions.
In the fourth quarter Leo topped off a superb display with his hatrick, he chased a kick out of defence from Lightning putting the full back under pressure and as he fumbled for the ball Leo snatched it from his grasp to go in.
We then extended the lead to 12-22 when Jack Darby who had been making yards all morning with his great aggressive running scored a well deserved try clearing half the length of the pitch after breaking the Waterloo line. At this point with only minutes left we should have seen the game out but the lads switched off and Waterloo scored in the corner to pull themselves back within 5 points. We completely missed the blindside from a ruck allowing the Waterloo player to run in unchallenged. They then scored again with 2 minutes on the clock to level the scores when from the resulting kickoff a rangy Waterloo player cleared half the pitch dodging sloppy tackles to score under the posts, the conversion to win the game was an easy one. Despite the 2 minute call the ref decided time was up at this point.
Overall we played OK, we defended well but got out rucked and struggled in the scrum and whilst the backs looked good with the ball in hand we just didn't have enough possession to control things. The various injuries also continued to mount with Jack Dunn and Joe E both not fit to play once they got there, Rorio only fit to play 10 minutes and Henry coming off with a shoulder injury. I counted about 7-8 injured players watching today!
Thanks to Waterloo for the competitive game and the hospitality. We have them in the cup in the new year at home, hopefully we will turn this result around then! Next week Newcastle at home.