Published at 09:10, Monday, 23 April 2012
Ryton 22Ponteland 15
DESPITE losing at fellow strugglers Ryton, Ponteland’s status in Durham and Northumberland Division One was secured at the weekend.
Ashington’s defeat to Hartlepool Rovers prevented Pont from dropping into the relegation zone, meaning they will be playing in the higher division again next term.
It was a scrappy game between two teams looking over their shoulders.
Ryton took an early lead through a penalty which Ponteland were unfortunate to concede.
The soundof the referee’s whistle filled the Ryton air often as mistake after mistake, and infringement after infringement, were made in the tense encounter.
Ponteland levelled up as Ryton were penalised for their consistent offside infringements, Michael Mullins sending over a convincing penalty.
But two minutes later Pont were left licking their wounds as Ryton scored the first try of the match as the winger danced all too easily through some weak Ponteland tackling to score under the posts.
The fly half converted with ease.
Pont were really staring down the barrel as lock forward Chris Freer was yellow carded moments later for an infringement at the break down.
But the home side conceded another penalty and, after some deliberation with skipper Danny Harrison, Mullins notched a fine kick just before the break to leave the half time score at 10-6 to the hosts.
Five minutes into the second half and yet more Ryton indiscipline saw Mullins bring the visitors within one point as the game was on a knife edge.
Ponteland shot themselves in the foot as the home side scored their second try as their replacement back forward powered through.
Ponteland protested that the ball was not grounded properly but their complaints fell on deaf ears as Ryton opened up a six point advantage.
With Jake White on crutches on the sidelines and Pete Burns limping off after just five minutes, Pont were lacking much of the fluidity and creativity shown in their recent revival in form as they struggled to create any try scoring opportunities.
They were instead reliant on the boot of Mullins who kicked them back within three points with a fine strike down the middle of the posts as a Ryton player escaped a sin bin after another offside at the break down.
But, as Pont clung on by their skin of their teeth, Ryton’s impressive Fijian full back put a nail in the coffin of any misplaced optimism on the sidelines that an unlikely victory could be on the cards as he powerfully ran through to score the home side’s third and final try to claim a deserved victory.
The impressive Mullins sent over a consolation penalty five minutes from time to earn Pont a bonus point in a 22-15 defeat, but that was the only point coming back with Ponteland.
The visitors’ late season revival, which saw them pick up 23 points from eight games, will bring hope that they can put up more of a challenge in the league next year.
Published by http://www.hexhamcourant.co.uk
This week in... 1919Saturday, December 13, 1919...
AT a public meeting in Wylam Institute it was decided to split the remaining money in the village's peace celebration fund between the village schools and a planned war memorial to the Fallen.
A brass plaque bearing the names of 19 former students who died in the Great War was to be erected in the Wylam Council Schools at a cost of £20 and £30 was to be donated to the war memorial fund.