Moorenders lose their cool

Moorenders lose their cool

CLECKHEATON squandered a solid lead against Ilkley to lose 26-18 against their National League Three North rivals.

The Moorenders went ahead early on through flanker Tom Austin who made the most of a break from prop Paul Turner.

The hosts missed the conversion but Cleckheaton were next to score 15 minutes later with a well worked try which saw Josh Hall and Martin Woodhead combine to race a third of the pitch, before James Wilson collected the off-load to complete the long range effort.

Once again the conversion attempt was no match for the cross-wind and the score remained 10-0.

Ilkley’s Joe Rowntree got his side on the board with a penalty goal, but Ronan Evans reciprocated for the Moorenders to maintain the 10-point advantage.

Ilkley were quiet for the majority of the first half, but with the minutes ticking down to half-time the visitors mounted a rare surge which led to try-scorer Austin being sin binned for the hosts.

Rowntree added the subsequent penalty to narrow his side’s deficit to seven points.

Shortly after the second half got underway Ilkley made the most of their numerical advantage with a try courtesy of Ben Magee.

The full-back ran down the middle of the park for a well taken touchdown and Rowntree levelled the scores with a successful conversion.

Things quickly got worse for Cleckheaton when James Wilson was shown a yellow card for an infringement in the ruck. The prolific Rowntree was once again on target with the subsequent penalty.

The Moorenders were beginning to lose their heads somewhat as the tables turned in the contest.

Immediately after the restart Jack Seddon received a yellow card for tackling in the air and the hosts found themselves playing with 13 men.

As a result Cleckheaton’s fragile defence surrendered to Dion Hendrick, allowing Rowntree to convert. A few minutes later Rowntree added another penalty to take the game beyond Cleckheaton.

The hosts rallied to find a way back into the game and a try from Ross Hayden gave them a glimmer of hope in the closing stages, but a controversially ruled out conversion attempt meant the home side couldn’t get within seven points of their opponents and claim the bonus point.

The Moorenders are currently eighth following the defeat but hope to climb the League Three North standings with a win away at Rossendale tomorrow (Sat Oct 1, 3pm).

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