Warriors ladies sign off in style

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Leyland Warriors Women’s team closed their 2014 campaign with Salford based Langworthy Reds the visitors to Moss Side playing fields and it was the Warriors who came out on top 24-10.

he Warriors were quick out of the blocks with some strong running setting up good field position for Jacci Bullen to open the scoring with a try which she also converted.

Leyland’s defence was restricting the Reds’ yardage and when Vicky Austin and Katie Pilkington both went close on the right, Kirsty Barrett dived over from dummy half to score.

Both sides had settled into the game now and a much improved Langworthy rallied with a converted try before Hannah Banks powered over in the left hand corner to extend the Warriors’ lead.

Leyland finished the first half with a superb try as Barrett took the ball to the line and Bullen hit a great line at pace to break through the line, step the fullback and score, again converting for a 20-6 scoreline.

The second half saw both sides improve their defensive effort but back to back penalties against the Warriors eventually saw the visitors add their second try with quick hands to score in the corner.

Leyland went close to scoring on a couple of occasions but they could not complete the final pass and although they turned the ball over several times, their tackling helped them to keep control of the game.

It was the Warriors who completed the scoring, as Hannah Banks chipped over on the last tackle, Jenny Langdon kicked ahead and Sophie Dodd scooped up the ball and dived over the line for her first try for the club.

The Under-11s played host to Westhoughton Lions and in the early exchanges both teams tried to weigh each other up with some very cautions plays but it was Leyland who broke the deadlock as Hague once again showed his strength with a powerful run and Watson added the extras.

Cooper went over soon after with a trademark long run down the wing, before Westhoughton added their first of the game squeezing over out wide. Schofield and the returning Hindle both crossed for Leyland with two more strong runs, with Hill adding the extras. Westhoughton scored again just before the end of the first half giving the boys a 20-12 lead going into the break.

The second half was very tight with both teams solid in defence; Watson, Hill and Mccoll were once again leading the Leyland line from the front with some top tackling preventing Westhoughton from adding to their score in the second half. Hindle scored his second try for the Warriors with J.Parkinson adding the extras.

Unfortunately the game was ended a few minutes early with Hindle suffering a bad fall on his head and needing ambulance treatment for neck injuries, thankfully these turned out to be very minor injuries and he was soon home recovering.

The team’s display was fantastic, especially in defence, although Watson stood out with some massive tackles.

Leyland’s Under-10s put in a much improved performance this week against West Bank Bears, with a good effort from all the lads and despite the 24-6 score line, there was a tight and competitive feel to the game throughout.

With territory and possession fairly even, it was the final execution of the Widnes side that separated the two teams, despite a fantastic try from Daniel Rimmer, outpacing the edge defence before swerving back inside to beat the fullback and score. The Under-9s travelled to Oldham to play Waterhead and the game started well with Leyland winning the toss.

They opted to play first and put in some excellent hard drives from Josh Hignett, Jack Tootell and Matthew Schmid. A good passing interchange very nearly paid off when Leon Whatton played the ball out to the wing only for Waterhead to put in a saving tackle on Ali Randall.

An error from Waterhead gave the ball back to Leyland who drove forward again through Man of the Match Zak Bentham, who used his strength to push through the defence and score. This sparked Waterhead into life and they scored a succession of quick tries through their big forwards, proving too strong for Leyland, despite some excellent tackles from Luke Weston, Jake Cooper and Tom and Will Down.

The second half proved a much more even affair but try as they might Leyland couldn’t force the ball over the line thanks to a couple of handling errors and an excellent defensive display from the Oldham side. Jake Cooper kept battling away and twice went close, just inches from the line, taking three players to hold him back.

The team were commended by the opposition coach at full time for the way that they kept battling until the end, never once letting their heads drop, despite the 28-4 score.

The Under-8s played host to Saddleworth Rangers, who kicked the game off with a quick try from their first attack to take an early lead.

However, this was quickly followed up by the Warriors top tryscorer Declan Fell who out ran the opposition following a great off-load by Joseph Dodd.

Harry Jones once again put in a strong performance defensively with some great tracking back and a try saving tackle on the line.

But the Warriors defence couldn’t hold off the attack as Saddleworth again took the lead followed up by another quick try from the opposition.

Michael Howells brought the Warriors back into the game with a great try down the wing using speed and fancy footwork to take the score at half-time to 12-8 in favour of the opposition.

The youngsters came out in the second half fired up and determined.

Some great straight drives up the field by the excellent Ellis Grice and new recruit Riley McFarlane brought Luke Schmid and Declan Fell very close to the line again.

Despite some great tackling from Zak Heggie, Joseph Dodd and Pius Whatton who held their nerve to bring down the opposition, Saddleworth increased their lead with some great steps and speed.

A quick responsive attack from the Warriors led to a great off-load between Luke Schmid and Declan Fell only to be thwarted by some big defenders in the Saddleworth opposition.

A good solid performance from the Warriors today who took some big tackles but kept getting back up to continue the attack.

The final score of 24-8 to the opposition didn’t reflect the overall fantastic performance of the home team who all put in 100% effort and should be proud of their display of rugby.

The man-of-the-match went to Riley McFarlane, top tackler was Harry Jones and Declan Fell was awarded opposition man of the match.