WHITLEY Bay Rockcliff’s recent run of good form was put to the test against runaway league leaders Acklam.
And the home side were found wanting as, despite holding their own in the forwards, the Red and Golds had no answer to the pace and power of the visiting backs, who moved the ball wide and scored all but one of their tries in the corner.
Rockcliff got off to a poor start, conceding a try straight from the kick off, and they conceded two further tries in the next eight minutes to find themselves 17-0 down.
Rockcliff woke themselves up and started to rally but were caught again ten minutes later when Acklam broke again to score.
The home pack then began to make inroads into Acklam territory, and drove over the visitors line, only to concede a penalty.
As the first half was drawing to a close Acklam broke away again to score their fifth try of the match and earn a bonus point.
Prop Duncan Jordan came off for Stephen Pentland in the second half, and the home pack continued to match the visitors, but the pattern of fast counter attacks by Acklam continued and they scored a further four tries and conversion.
Ashington 3rd XV 45
Whitley Bay Rockcliff 3rd XV 12
THE Rangers were leading 12-5 at half time through tries from Matt Dunbar, who scored a great solo effort, converted by Rob Burns, and, following a good passage of team play, Burns scored Rockcliff’s second try.
In the second half, an experienced Ashington side stepped up the gears and scored 40 unanswered points to take the win.
Rockcliff Junior Rugby
Northern Under 18 31
Rockcliff Under 18 12
ROCKCLIFF were trailing 12-0 to two tries and a conversion before Matt Dunbar broke through the home defence to touch down under the posts, and Rhys Johnstone added a conversion.
Northern responded with two further unconverted tries before Dunbar added his second of the game.
The pack set up a series of drives for the Northern line, and man of the match Dan Atkinson set the ball up for Dunbar to pick and drive over from close range for 21-12.
Rockcliff were making a contest of the match and the front row of Michael Donaldson, Dan Leach and Atkinson were in fine form. There were also good performances from Rhys Johntone, Nick Jones and Spencer Hind.
A last minute penalty try was awarded to Northern.