Morpeth 3 Middlesbrough 17 North One East
A WEEK is a long time in sport and so it proved as Morpeth went down to a disappointing home defeat against a Boro outfit that was stronger up front and worked efficiently to gain a well-merited victory.
This was a game in which Morpeth could hardly say they deserved a share of the spoils and were ultimately defeated by the better team on the day.
It was a gloomy day when the home side, in good form after recent victories, kicked off towards the clubhouse end with Craigs immediately in the action, leaping high to continue the momentum and prove a focal point. Quick ball was recycled but eventually came to nothing.
Unfortunately this proved to be one of the highest points of the game from a Morpeth perspective as they failed to maintain their early promise.
On their first visit into the Morpeth 22, an attacking line-out and drive saw Morrison trip, thereby allowing the Boro fly-half to cross over unopposed. The successful conversion made it a seven-point score.
Morpeth did get on the score-sheet when Phillips converted a penalty, albeit he missed another from a similar distance, and when the Teessiders converted one of their own it made the half-time score 10-3 to Boro.
Five minutes into the second half, a sizzling outside break by the Boro centre saw him race over from fully 40 metres to touch down under the posts, leaving a simple conversion to make the score 17-3.
It was a crucial score with the home side unable to make any impact on the game which became as gloomy as the weather.
Try as they might Morpeth could not breach the Boro defence as the half-backs pushed the home side back into their half, thereby controlling the territory and the game.