Morpeth U14s 23 Gateshead U14s 15
Played on a cold calm day, Morpeth set out to follow on from their excellent away win against Berwick by taking on a Gateshead team with a physically imposing pack.
Gateshead started brightly, testing Morpeth’s defence in all parts of the pitch.
Morpeth held firm and slowly got into the game, opening the scoring with a surging run up the pitch by full-back Laing creating pressure near the Gateshead line and scrum-half Ben Gascoigne burrowing over from close range. The conversion missed from out wide on the left (5-0).
The concession of the try seemed to deflate Gateshead and spur on the home team to increase the pressure on their opponents.
Morpeth scored again, when some good work from the pack enabled number eight Elliot Clark to blast over the line next to the posts and the score was converted by fly-half Betram (12-0).
At the start of the second half, Morpeth collected the kick and shipped the ball onto winger Jack Andrews to score an outstanding long-range try in the corner, the conversion was missed (17-0).
With the score at 17-0, Morpeth lost some focus and allowed Gateshead back into the game, and with two well-worked unconverted tries, the game became a tight contest.
At 17-10, the next score was crucial, and it was Morpeth’s man of the match Ruaridh Laing cutting a great line to pierce the Gateshead defence who got the try.
Gateshead fought back to score with the last play of the game, but the effort was in vain as Morpeth held on for their well-deserved third win of the season by 23 points to 15.
The man-of-the-match award was sponsored by Mike and Joy Gascoigne.