Stirk returns with double as 2013 starts on a high

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Barnsley RUFC 8

Bridlington RUFC 22

BRIDLINGTON followed on from their good performance against the Exiles, with an away win at Barnsley.

Both teams went through their warm up drills, as they waited for the pitch to be inspected, as it had a lot of bad patches, it was more like a mud patch than a pitch.

The game did however go ahead, it was heavy going for the players, with the ball stopping rather than bouncing in many areas.

Bridlington kicked off the game, putting pressure on the home side right from the start.

Barnsley had to kick a couple of times to try to escape their half but the visitors continued to press, only losing out when a lineout throw was not straight.

From the resultant scrum, Barnsley began to exert some pressure of their own, but this was short lived, as Bridlington again made good work with their possession.

Barnsley had another short period of possession, but again from a scrum Bridlington made an attack, quick ball to Ryan Girking, allowed him to break the gain line, linking with Ryan Kerr, the ball was fed to Tom Bennett on the wing to score the first try of the match.

Barnsley then began to string phases of play together, which resulted in a good run by the winger, this attack was stopped by Regan Stirk, managing to get the ball away to Oliver Stephenson, who made a good run of his own up to Bridlington`s 40.

The home side managed to regain the ball, but their attack was again stopped by good defence, and Ryan Kerr was able to rip the ball, and mount an attack.

From a lineout just inside the 22, Barnsley caught and drove at the defence, Bridlington stopped them short of the line, as wave upon wave of attacks came from the forwards, but when the number eight knocked the ball on, Bridlington were awarded a five metre scrum, from which they were able to feed Stirk to clear the line.

Barnsley continued to mount attacks on the defence, Bridlington held firm, on their 22.

Towards the end of the half Bridlington mounted an attack from a ruck, Luxton picked up and made a good 10 metre run, with the rest of the pack supporting, but the ball was knocked on after many phases of pick and go, allowing the referee to end the half.

After an exchange of kicking early in the second half, Barnsley were given a scrum just outside Bridlington’s 22. A good run by the number eight was stopped by the defence short of the line, and with a couple of penalties to Barnsley they opted for the scrum twice.

A good shove by the Bridlington pack gave Stevie Mellonby a chance to clear up field with a high and long box kick.

Barnsley secured the ball, running it back at the Bridlington defence, a few phases of play by them up to the 22, where they were awarded a penalty which they kicked successfully.

Barnsley attacked again straight from the restart, Bridlington defended well again, turning over possession with a penalty as Barnsley held on in the tackle.

This was kicked for a lineout just outside their 22, James Thompson won the lineout, and quick hands saw Regan Stirk get the ball early, evading three tackles he ran in for a try.

From the restart good attacking play by the visitors’ forwards, released the backs. Muru chipped ahead for Stirk to chase but unfortunately the full back got to the ball first for a drop out kick.

Bridlington kicked ahead, straight into the arms of the standoff, he kicked it himself, but unfortunately for him Stirk caught this and ran it in for his second try of the match, this time Muru stepped up to successfully convert.

Barnsley enjoyed some more good passages of play for a while, but neither team were able to turn possession into ground as play stayed in the middle of the park.

Barnsley eventually got the upper hand and marched slowly up the field. Bridlington were able to turn the ball over and kick upfield, but a great run by the full back put them back on the defensive, linking with his centre who was stopped a couple of metres from the line.

Bridlington cleared the line with a kick but still inside the 22. Barnsley caught and drove from the lineout, again coming up short.

They went through many phases, before they were able to dash down the blind side to score an unconverted try.

Barnsley again put pressure on the visitors, edging their way up field, but then following an injury to their prop, the scrums were reduced to uncontested.

After a good run by Luxton up to the halfway line, a pick and drive by first Thompson then Paddy Waines, helped Bridlington make ground.

A scrum to Barnsley shortly after gave their number eight another chance to run. Once he was stopped Thompson, Auryn Murray, Zolani Faba and Adam Dixon each made a good run.

Five metres from the line, a quick pick and go a couple of times, led to Gary Heeley diving over the line for another try. Following the failed conversion attempt the referee ended the game.

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