Home defeat a disappointing end to season for Percy Park

Percy Park's Craig Smith scored two tries in the defeat to Guisborough.
Percy Park's Craig Smith scored two tries in the defeat to Guisborough.

Despite opening the scoring with a Craig Smith try on 12 minutes, Percy Park’s season finale was a disappointing one as they went down to a lively and spirited Guisborough side.

Conditions were good for running rugby as the pitch had dried out well from the previous week’s downpour.

More than 140 former players, guests, sponsors and officials enjoyed a pre-match lunch, and although neither Park nor Guisborough could improve on their current league position, both sides were out to end their season on a high.

After the early exchanges, it was clear that this was going to be a high scoring game, and so it proved, although Percy Park dominated the set piece.

When Guisborough did have possession, their pacey back line had the hosts in all sorts of trouble, particularly fly-half Will Muir, who scored an unconverted try for the visitors a minute after Park had gone into a 7-0 lead.

Two minutes later Guisborough were ahead when number eight Michael MacDougall scored in the corner, and once again the conversion was wide.

Paul Spowart’s 25th minute penalty kick for Percy Park levelled the scores at 10-10.

With the half drawing to a close, Park skipper Michael Langlands was sin binned for tripping, and the visitors took advantage as hooker Richard Clark scored in the 38th minute, and this time Muir made no mistake with the conversion for a 17-10 lead at the interval.

Park were guilty of not capitalising on the possession earned by the pack and too often kicked the ball that allowed Guisborough to counter.

The visitors had the bonus point in the bag on 50 minutes as centre James Clark scored and Muir extended the lead to 24-10.

Liam Scott’s try on the hour kept Park in touch, although Spowart’s conversion attempt hit the post and bounced out.

Playmaker Muir scored his second try of the game as he carved through Park’s defence, kicking the conversion to go 31-10 in front.

Spowart kept Park in the hunt, just, with a penalty, but Guisborough snuffed out any chance of a come back with their final try of the game.

Park scored a consolation try at the end with Smith’s second of the game, and although Spowart converted, the game was gone and the score ended 25-38.

Park finished the season in ninth place on 56 points. They won 11 of their 26 games and lost the other 15.