BEVERLEY Under-16’s made the trip to Grange Park with a depleted squad of 15 against a good Wetherby team only to emerge with a superb 31-14 victory.
The hosts also had only fifteen players to call on and unsurprisingly the initial 10 minutes were evenly contested. The first decisive moment in the game came after a break from Beverley stretched the Wetherby defence and with the ball quickly moved through hands and the line at their mercy Beverley were unable to take advantage. However this attack appeared to galvanise Beverley and although several players were playing in unfamiliar positions their confidence was visibly growing.
The next decisive moment in the game came when a Beverley line out in their own half was taken off the top by flanker Ollie Loney and precisely provided to scrum half Lewis Egan who delivered a pinpoint pass to fly half Sam Peers who found outside centre Archie Murdoch. He superbly cut back inside ahead of the covering defence and rounded the fullback for an excellent try. Harry Vorwerg converted.
The resulting Wetherby kick off was gathered by flanker Felix Law who popped the ball to Peers and with the home defence pouring forward, executed a lovely chip kick which left winger Vorwerg caught at full pace for another well executed try which he then converted.
Wetherby were able to regroup and just before half time they forced a five metre line out and caught Beverley napping with a throw to the front of the line driven over for a good try, superbly converted from the touch line and the arrears reduced to 14-7.
A good restart by Law was well retained by Beverley. The ball was then driven deep into Wetherby territory and with the home defence struggling to cope with Beverley's offloads out of the tackle, a clever pass out of the back the hand by Beverley's impressive captain George Bennett-Teare put Loney in space for a superb team try.
In the next passage of play, great counter rucking from second rower Alex Burgess and quick thinking by Egan put Law in space and with Wetherby on the attack and no defensive cover, he was able to run in unopposed from inside Beverley's own half, again converted by Vorweg.
Another excellent cross kick by Peers was caught on the full by Vorwerg and kicked ahead for Murdoch to chase the ball hard giving Wetherby's fullback no option other than to take the ball dead for a Beverley 5 metre scrum. Bennett-Teare picked up from the base of the scrum and drove over down the blindside for a good trademark score.
Due to injuries to two Wetherby players and neither side able to field replacements, the teams were now playing 13 a side rugby. A good Wetherby break took them up to Beverley's try line and after a series of penalties, Wetherby eventually broke through for a well-deserved try. Another Wetherby injury, however, led to the referee taking the sensible option and calling time 5 minutes early.
The referee's man of match for Beverley's backs went to Vorwerg with Bennett-Teare taking the accolade for the forwards.