Stags Academy in touch with leaders

MIRFIELD Stags Academy bounced back from back-to-back losses on Saturday, defeating Silsden 26-16 in a hard-fought affair.

The victory means Sean Hayden’s men are back in the title hunt, but it was no easy ride for the travelling Stags.

Despite racing into an impressive lead, and being clear by four scores at the break, they were forced to repel something of a fightback from the hosts.

The Academy scored straight from the kick off through Phil Shotton and Jake Shaw added the extra two.

Shaw returned to the kicking tee shortly after to improve a try of his own, which saw him race 40 metres to score, making it 12-0 to the away side.

Silsden hit back on 20 minutes, though Mirfield soon regained control of the Pennine League Division Four contest, which took place at Silsden’s Banklands home.

Adam Jones grabbed the Stags’ third try of the game and he was joined on the scoresheet by Adam Goldsworthy and Tom Alderson before half-time.

But in the second half Silsden returned to the field fired up and they narrowed their deficit on 53 minutes, bagging a converted try.

And they crossed again, shortly after the hour mark, to move to within 10 points of levelling matters.

Despite being kept scoreless after the interval, the Stags held on during the dying stages to clinch the win.

The Stags’ Academy side are now fourth in Division Four West, four points off top with a game in hand.

Next up for the Academy is a trip to face Cowling Harlequins tomorrow (Saturday, 2.30pm).

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