Percy Park Lions roar to cup final

This was the fifth time in as many years Percy Park Lions had progressed to the final of the County No. 2 competition.

Park had lost out in the previous two seasons at the hands of Corbridge Centurions and Alnwick 2nds, the two sides who made up the other semi-final, Park were once again up against Alnwick.

The game took place at Whitley Bay Rockcliff, a happy hunting ground for Park in recent years, as it proved again with the Lions running out winners 33-8.

Alnwick started well but it was Park who notched first with Michael Groves retrieving a chip through to go over for the score that Paul Spowart converted from an acute angle.

Both sides competed fiercely and it was not until the 32nd minute that lock Josh Hedley, using his 6ft 9ins, frame powered over to score with Spowart converting the extras.

Stu Findlay scored wide out just before the break to take Park into the second half 19-0 ahead.

Park, having defeated Alnwick on the previous three occasions already played this season, found the Northumbrians upped their game with a penalty then an unconverted try on 51 minutes.

This stung the Lions into action and Michael Groves scored his second try of the game again converted by Spowart.

Park were now 26-8 ahead but were made to work hard for their trophy, which was sealed with a try by Ethan Wilson.

The Park flanker, playing in the centre for this game, was put through a gap for his try with a good offload by Josh Hedley, and the Spowart conversion gave Park the win 33-8.

Percy Park Penguins 23

Tynedale Hadrian 24

Northumberland Junior Challenge Trophy

Percy Park Penguins have been in the last three finals of the Junior Challenge Trophy, although there was not much junior about either side who fielded veterans of a few eras in a tight final won with only minutes to go by Tynedale with a try by Craig Johnstone.

Park had opened the scoring with a penalty by Alex Giles, before a bull-dozing try by Sam Walton put Park 10-0 ahead.

Another Giles penalty put Park further ahead, before Tyne Vets cut the gap with a try by their full back.

Giles took advantage of another three points in a penalty strewn game to take the Penguins into half-time 16-5 up.

In the second period, Tynedale lifted their performance, scoring two converted tries to take the lead.

Park seemed to incur the wrath of the referee being penalised at most breakdowns and were down to 14 men when Steve Williamson was yellow carded.

With seven minutes to go, Park mounted an attack that was finished off by Andy McNab who sniped his way through the Tyne defence to score under the posts, converted by Gary Davy.

Park were now back in front 23-19 but after a series of penalties awarded against them, a quick tap was spun wide as the Penguins ran out of defenders and the Tynedale wing crossed for a try in the right hand corner.

Tynedale played out the last minute or so of the game after retrieving the ball from the kick off, protecting the slenderest of leads until the final whistle.