Beverley Under-15's travelled to Leeds to take on Yorkshire Cup Champions West Park but despite a battling performance they were beaten 39-10.
The visitors started brightly playing against the elements of a sloping pitch, strong wind and rain. A clever kick by outside half Danny Prescott allowed Charlie Carling to hack the ball into the West Park 22.
The Beverley pack followed up to win back the ball and a drive by second row Oliver Vaux was held short only for back-row partner Jake Harding to pick up and drive over. Stung by Beverley’s start, the home side started to play to their strengths by bringing their strong running backs into play. This, coupled with some booming kicks by the fly-half gave West Park territory and possession.
Despite Beverley’s dominance in the scrum due to Hopson, Reid and Spence, it proved difficult to hold the strong home side who controlled the rest of the half running in five tries. Too many tackles were missed against the strong running backs who were able to keep the ball alive in extremely wet conditions to leave the half time score 29-5.
Beverley tried to re-group at half time and had the advantages of the conditions in the second half, but the strength in depth of West Park was evident when they were able to change six of their pack with no obvious change in the quality of their play.
The second half started as the first finished with further missed tackles leading to another try and a charge down leading to a further score. Beverley had to dig deep for the final 15 minutes and led by the back row of Hirst, Knight and Eagle with direction from scrum half Scanlan they started to use the slope and wind to gain some territory.
Beverley got into the opposition 22 and put pressure on the home side, and two driving mauls were held up short of the line, the second illegally. Beverley chose a scrum which tied in the West Park forwards and quick ball from the scrum and good hands along the line from Foreman, Celella and Cowie allowed Carling some space to score in the opposite corner.
Some tough lessons learned from the game, but great heart from the team to continue playing for the full 60 minutes against a strong side.