The Under 15 rugby team overturned a 21-5 half time deficit to win 29-26 against a very strong Queen Elizabeth High School, Hexham team.
Hexham started well and had a clear size advantage, although some excellent tackling by centres Euan D and Jose B kept them at bay. Despite some stout defence, Hexham scored first. Shortly afterwards, excellent hands by half back Alex L and Dan B moved the ball wide to Lewis R who finished smartly. Hexham then enjoyed a period of sustained pressure with their outstanding full back and number 8 to the fore as they stretched out to 21-5.
In the second half, some positional changes helped NSB to enjoy more possession. Sam P and Jake S made several telling breaks before excellent support play by the back rowers led to tries by Tristan S and Oliver F. Josh L was probing from fly half and good hands by him and William V led to Sam P diving over. With two minutes remaining, NSB took the lead with a second Sommersall try and, with the final play, it was Peter playing against several of his Tynedale clubmates who overturned a ruck to win the game.
NSB will now play Bede Academy or Durham Johnston School in the final.
Dame Allan’s scored two easy goals to put NSB on the back foot. It could have been a lot worse for NSB if it was not down to Max W who made a number of fantastic saves. However, NSB did not drop their heads and they started keeping the ball and looking dangerous when getting it wide to their wingers. NSB’s improved passing led to a goal with Gagan H passing a through ball to Ali D who placed the ball past the keeper. That goal lifted NSB’s confidence and, towards the end of the first half, they were awarded a free kick at the halfway line. José Bstepped up to take it and smashed the ball in the back of the net making it 2-2 at half-time.
In the second half, NSB were determined to start strongly. Dodds saw the ball head right in the centre of the box, landing at Jack P’s feet to tap the ball in and score to make it 3-2 to NSB. A perfect start to the second half. Dame Allan’s responded well looking for a quick reply, but the outstanding defence from the two centre backs George Dand Alex L prevented them from scoring. NSB were still determined to score more goals, and they were awarded another corner. Dodds, taking the corner again put the ball at the back post for Ling to score a header to make it 4-2. NSB didn’t finish there and added a fifth goal through Dodds again to end the game 5-2.
It was fantastic performance from the whole team but Max W earned man of the match award for his fantastic saves in goal especially in the first half.
The Year 10 football team played against touring side Birkdale in torrential rain which made the conditions very muddy.
NSB began the game slowly, conceding two goals early on. Nevertheless, they reacted well with some great passing play through from defence to attack, looking very dangerous on the break. NSB pulled one back through some excellent passing in the middle of the park, which led to a through ball for Alex N to run onto and finish calmly. After the goal, NSB retained the majority of possession and looked strong leading up to half time, resulting in another goal from Nicholson to make it all square.
In the second half, NSB continued to defend well, keeping Birkdale out for prolonged periods. Even though they remained strong in defence, NSB’s counter attack looked dangerous. A great ball from Joe W to Ali D saw him take the ball around the goal keeper and calmly tapped it in to make it 3-2. However, Birkdale replied immediately through their strong centre forward who was constant threat to the NSB defence. In the final ten minutes, Birkdale finished strongly and had a number of chances to score. However, the defence put in a huge effort to keep them out with two sliding blocks from George D. Unfortunately, Birkdale scored in the dying minutes through an obscured view for Max W and the ball shot through a Birkdale player’s legs and left no time for Max to react. The game finished 4-3 to Birkdale but the whole team can be proud of their performance in testing conditions.