YMCA travelled to Driffield knowing only a five-point win would be enough to keep their outside chance of making the North East 1 play off hopes alive. With Morpeth almost certainly being promoted as champions the race for the playoff spot was between the YM, Morley and Scarborough but with the YM going down 26 – 21 at Driffield the race now is all but over for the Laund Hill outfit. They could however have a say in the final outcome as they have to go to Morley for the penultimate game of the season.
With ground conditions near perfect the game was played at a cracking pace with both teams using the wide-open spaces of Kellythorpe to good advantage but despite having the lion’s share of the ball and field position the visitors could not break the home defence.
On 8 minutes the home team broke the YM strangle hold on the game when impressive No8 Adam Brankley broke out of his own 22 to burst up the pitch before good backing up and passing put centre John Soanes over under the posts. Watts converted, Driffield 7 – 0 YM.
YM again camped in the home half but were unable to break the resolute home defence and once again Driffield went almost the full length of the field to score. On 20 minutes from a line out the ball was moved quickly to create an overlap for left wing Robinson to race 50 meters to score wide out. Watts was unable to add the extras. Driffield 12 – 0 YM.
With the home defence frustrating the YM it wasn’t long before Driffield extended their lead with another long-range effort. On 25 minutes and from an attacking position YM spilled the ball only for Driffield to regain the ball and good backing up and passing put full back Jackson over under the posts, Watts added the conversion, Driffield 19 – 0 YM.
As half time approached YM did manage to turn pressure into points as Gavin Stead touched down by the posts. The home team were reduced to 14 men as Driffield captain was shown a yellow card for repeated offences at the breakdown. From the resultant penalty YM had a line out 5 meters out and the ball was eventually moved into mid field for Stead to crash his way through the home defence to score. Stead added the extras to give a half time score, Driffield 19 – 7 YM.
Straight from the restart YM couldn’t secure the ball which allowed man of the match Brankley to gather the ball and race through a static YM defence to score and with Watts adding the conversion it left the visitors with a mountain to climb to get back into the game. Driffield 26 – 7 YM.
Once again YM were putting pressure on the home team but it took until the 60th minute for them to break the Driffield defence. From a scrum just inside the Driffield half the ball was recycled several times before stand off Bull made a half break before passing on to the supporting Stead who outpaced the cover to score, Stead added the extras, Driffield 26 – 14 YM.
The score gave the YM a glimmer of hope but with the home team defence on top form it wasn’t until the closing minutes that the YM were able to reduce the arears further. As the clock ticked down the home team were once again reduced to 14 men as stand off Watts was shown yellow for foul play. YM took advantage of the situation and after stretching the home defence scrum half Bradley chipped over the ruck for wing forward James Tindall to collect the ball and race 25 meters to score near the posts. Stead converted, Driffield 26 – 21 YM.
The final score proved too little too late as the YM were left to rue missed opportunities and not being able to turn field position and possession into points. Final score Driffield 26 – 21 YM.
YM team, Slater, Hill, Dyke, Black, Housley, Tindall, Davidson, Hodge, Bradley, Bull, Van Rooyen, Stead, Clough, Burns-Smith, Tetley. Subs (all used) Scholes, Appleby.
|23/03/2019||3:00 pm||North 1 East||2018/2019|
|Kellythorpe Gatehouse, Driffield|
|Kellythorpe Gatehouse, Kelleythorpe, Driffield YO25 9DW, UK|
|Huddersfield YMCA RUFC||21|
Huddersfield YMCA RUFC