Great Game - Close Result!
On the back of last weeks high scoring away win Heath went into this away fixture with Morley with a near full squad of players.
Heath kicked off, regained possession and were straight on the offensive with a direct charge through the middle from Prop Lewis Dow, a sight the Morley forwards were to see regularly throughout the next 60 minutes. An offside penalty at the ruck was kicked to touch by captain Ben Gianotti for a Heath lineout 10 meters from the home sides try line. No 8 Isaac Shaw off the back crashed over near the right hand corner for Centre Jack Lumb to convert for the extra two sending Heath out to a 7-0 lead after two minutes.
From the kick off the Heath forwards worked hard recycling the ball giving a good platform for halfback George Barton to provide service to first five Ben Gianotti. The backs were running well and spreading the ball wide at any opportunity. The home side were also making inroads into the Heath half at any opportunity they got, testing the Heath defence across the park. Heath, not to be outdone attacked from a turnover within their own half where the ball was sent quickly wide to left Wing Sam McIntyre who outpaced the covering defence and scored in the left hand corner after ten minutes to lead 12 – 0.
Morley came back with a spell in the Heath half and despite strong tackling from the forward pack the home side crashed over for a converted try to trail 5-12. Possession and territory changed hands regularly in the final minutes before half time with loose forward Andrew Coates going close after a high tackle penalty was kicked to touch in the home sides 22.
The start of the second half saw Callum Pickett and Owen Simpson on for Jack Mollet and George Barton respectively with Alfie Connors returning for Finlay Verry. Play continued in a similar pattern to the end of the first half with possession regularly changing hands. Strong runs from Centres Dillon Hilton and Jack Lumb made regular territory gains but it was the home side who scored the first second half points to level the score at 12 points a piece 5 minutes into the second half.
Seb Wood-Ives replaced Adam Ayub on the Wing and shortly after another penalty to Heath for a high tackle, loose forward Alfie Connors was sent to the bin reducing Heath to 14 men, 6 minutes into the second half. Morley regularly kicked high but Fullback Max Rowntree was up to the task collecting all and running back to the opposition, more often than not gaining territory.
Twelve minutes into the second half Nathan Baldwyn and Jamie Reeve came on for Ben Kershaw and Saul Marson, both having had excellent games in the tight but it was Morley who scored next to take a 19-12 lead.
From the kick off the home side knocked on in their 22. From the scrum Heath won a penalty which was taken quickly by Owen Simpson putting pressure on the Morley defence. From a scrum just outside the home sides 22 the ball was sent wide to Jake Tyson who with plenty of work to do scored in the left hand corner. Up stepped Jack Lumb to convert from out wide to level the score at 19 all.
Twenty minutes into the half Alfie Connors returned to the field and Heath were back to the full compliment. With ten minutes to go it was all to play for with possession to going from side to side. The final Heath replacements were brought on but it was Morley to score next, under the posts after 25 minutes to lead 26-19, five minutes to play.
Heath came straight back from the kick off and collecting the ball near the half way Jack Lumb set off on a winding run that saw him score 5 metres in from the left hand touch with the clock in the red. The conversion, from nearly the same spot as the last hit the cross bar, a great effort from wide out. The full time whistle blew, and Morley had overcome a great effort from the Heath squad. A good hard, physical match that again showed how far the boys have come over the last 15 months – bodes well going forward.
There were many candidates for the Man of the Match with most of the squad putting their hands up. Coach Jordan Bradbrook finally settled on Jack Lumb, with Lewis Dow running close.
“Come on Heath”
Heath 24 – 26 Morley
1 Jack Mollet
2 Ben Kershaw
3 Lewis Dow
4 Saul Marson
5 Ed Vickers
6 Alfie Connors
7 Andrew Coates
8 Isaac Shaw Try
9 George Barton
10 Ben Gianotti Capt
11 Sam McIntyre Try
12 Dillon Hilton
13 Jack Lumb Try, 2 x Con
14 Adam Ayub
15 Max Rowntree
Jake Tyson Try