Birstall Victoria and Mirfield Stags registered impressive victories in Yorkshire Men’s League Division One last Saturday.
The Stags maintained their slender one-point lead over York Acorn at the top of the table thanks to a 38-20 victory over Beverley, while Victoria earned back-to-back wins by beating Oulton Raiders 26-10.
Beverley, the only team to beat the Stags in the league, raced into an early lead when Lewis Poskitt pounced on a loose ball to score.
Jack Howdle then put Jack Humphries through a gap to score and Bobby Howdle’s goal gave Beverley a 10-0 lead.
Michael Piper and Conner Sockett linked to put winger Niall Trewick-Wood in at the corner as the Stags hit back. Ross Hayden converted.
Centre Jake Shaw then burst through and raced clear to level, with Hayden’s goal edging Mirfield ahead.
Luke Manning was tackled close before Piper sent Trewick-Wood over for his second try, followed soon after by a length of the field effort from Hayden.
Beverley hit back with a Howdle converted try early in the second half as the visitors reduced the lead to six points.
Hayden dived over in the corner for his secondfollowing a series of offloads only for Beverley to reply again when a sweeping move was finished by full-back Josh Pooley.
Beverley’s hopes of victory were finally ended when Sockett stylishly rounded the winger to score in the corner.
The visitors pressed for a consolation try but instead gifted Hayden another length of the field interception score.
The stand-off raced away to complete his hat-trick and seal another important win in the Stags push for promotion and silverware.
With the majority of players back from injury, a near full strength Birstall Victoria team are playing some exciting rugby at the moment and have scored 100 points in their last two games.
Birstall full-back Sam Thornton opened the scoring after five minutes against Oulton before winger Ashley Tomlinson pressured his opposite number under a high ball, before sending stand-off Steve Suddards in at the corner.
Scrum-half Braden Hunter landed both conversions.
Oulton hit back with a try after 20 minutes but Birstall controlled the rest of the half and prop Richard Duffy scored as the Vic led 16-6.
Oulton came out strong in the second half and it was only a perfectly time tackle from substitute Josh Lockwood that prevented them getting back in the game.
Centre Ryan Ginnelly settled Birstall’s nerves with a 50th minute try which loose forward Matthew Gowland converted.
Oulton managed to break the Birstall defence to score, but prop Duffy completed the scoring with his second try of the game.
Man-of-the-match went to centre Jonny Parrish for his excellent defence, with Suddards, substitute half backs Tony Aubrey, Josh Lockwood, and forwards Gav Davis, Richard Duffy and Lee Birkett also in fine form.
Birstall travel to Sheffield Hillsborough Hawks on Saturday, while Mirfield Stags visit Oulton Raiders A, kick off 2.30pm.