First XV Match Report
BELPER 1ST XV 8
LINCOLN 1ST XV 34
MIDLANDS THREE EAST (NORTH)
Will Scammell and Josh Pratt grabbed two tries apiece as champions Lincoln ended the league season in style with a 34-8 win at Belper.
Conor Milnes crossed for his first try of the season while scrum half Charlie Clark also got his name on the score sheet. Jack McGill added two conversions.
The result meant Lincoln surpassed the 100 points mark while Belper finished the season in an impressive third place.
Lincoln made a blistering start to the match as Scammell opened the scoring inside the opening two minutes. The full-back dodged past several defenders as he sprinted in for a great try.
The visitors increased their lead after 11 minutes when prop Adam Smith popped the ball out to Ben Sykes who barged through several tackles before off-loading for Clark to score. McGill added the extras.
Belper began to put pressure on Lincoln and a good strong run saw the hosts stopped just metres out from the try line. Lincoln continued to produce some solid defence but Belper refused to give up and were eventually rewarded when club president Gaz Dakin forced his way over the line for a try.
Lincoln soon regained control as Pratt went over for his first try of the afternoon just a few minutes later. Good quick hands set up Laguna Fisiihoi to run upfield before the forward off-loaded for Pratt to run in for a try which McGill converted.
Scammell scored his second try as the visitors extended their lead on the half hour mark. McGill ran at the defence before the ball went through the hands to Scammell who sprinted in near the corner despite several players attempting to tackle him.
Adam Holland slotted over a penalty to reduce the deficit to 24-8 going in at the break.
Lincoln lost Leigh Dearden to the sin-bin but Belper were unable to take advantage and it was the visitors who were next to score. A good series of moves saw Lincoln keep possession before Glen White off-loaded for Milnes to go over for a try from close-in.
Captain Harry Cowles received a yellow card but Lincoln defended strongly and didn’t concede any more points.
With the last play of the game Lincoln scored their sixth and final try of the afternoon. After a ruck in their own half the ball went through the hands out to Ben Sykes on the wing. Sykes ran to the halfway line before managing to get the pass off out of the tackle to Pratt.
He then juggled it and sprinted in for a great try. McGill was unable to add the conversion but it didn’t stop Lincoln from recording their 21st league win of the season.
POST MATCH COMMENTS
Try scorer Conor Milnes, who was playing in his last league game for the club before moving to Ireland later in the year, was happy with the performance.
“It was good to finish the league season with a win,” said Milnes. “It was a little scrappy in patches, but I am pleased with how clinical we were with the ball in hand most of the game.
“It’s been an absolute pleasure to be part of a special club from a young age and finishing it off with a great bunch of lads and winning the league, and hopefully winning the cup, with them makes it that much better.”