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Home > News > Prudhoe & Stocksfield 18 - Seaham 5
Your News Prudhoe & Stocksfield 18 - Seaham 5

After falling victim to extremely inclement conditions the previous week, all eyes were on the weather forecast and the home pitch was subject to several inspections on the day of the game. Seaham were eventually given the go-ahead and set off in optimistic spirits.

It may have fallen more in Seahams favour had the game been played on the original date however as they were subjected to several crucial withdrawals at the eleventh hour. Full back Glen Hardie pulled out with a sore shoulder and open side flanker James Ramshaw also cried-off very late. This, added to the fact that centre Jon Dye was at a wedding and prop Gary Lynn was working along with Graeme Steel, mean that Seaham were missing a third of their first choice personnel. The question arose as to whether or not these disruptions would be pivotal to the games general pattern and outcome.

Seaham were fairly slow out of the blocks and allowed their hosts free reign with the ball in hand as they looked to take advantage of the slope. This allowed P+S to build up a head of steam and, even from the early minutes, it looked as if it would be a hard day at the office for the visitors as the hosts looked to bring their long unbeaten run to an abrupt halt.

Chris Bland was shown his second yellow card of the season around the tenth minute when the referee adjudged that he had illegally pulled down a maul. Although the big second row protested his innocence, he was directed towards the touchline for a ten-minute period of reflection. That apart, Seahams discipline had been rather good and their forwards used this to their advantage by picking and driving from the backs of rucks and mauls.

The hosts made the most of their numerical advantage and registered two tries and a penalty in Blands absence. Their experienced centre ran a good angle and took a pass in the middle of the pitch before crossing for the opening score. The visitors didnt seem to learn from their mistakes and another missed tackle shortly afterwards leaked a second try from 40 metres .

Prudhoes number 8 had played very close to the offside line throughout the game and was cautioned for his indiscretions. The referee eventually lost patience in the period leading up to the break and issued the errant back rower a yellow card for persistent infringements.

By this time though, the hosts were already sitting on what looked like a comfortable lead; particularly when they registered a third try of the day with virtually the last touch of the half after a Grant Dixon pass was intercepted and worked along the line.

Half Time: Prudhoe & Stocksfield (18) SEAHAM (0)

A stern half-time lecture seemed to shake Seaham out of their slumber. Half backs Brad Green and Jack McCallum linked well and tried to get the Harbour backs on the ascendancy at every given opportunity. Unfortunately, poor handling was to be their downfall and good ball was dropped in attacking positions on numerous occasions.

As the game went on, Seahams younger side seemed to get more into the game as they looked to keep their hosts on the move. However, the P+S defence was well organised and worked hard to ensure that the visitors were unable to convert their possession into points on the board.

Seahams defence appeared much sharper throughout the second half. It had to be; considering that they were looking to get back into the game whilst, at the same time, preventing their hosts from getting a crucial fourth try. John Dixon, now in the centres after starting at second row, put in a wonderful try-saving tackle on the line to deny the hosts a bonus point.

Grant Dixon scored a try with ten minutes remaining following a lineout catch by Ben Bell. The Seaham pack regrouped and drove well. The big flanker then bundled his way over the line for the fifth time this season. Brad Greens conversion attempt was missed but Seaham were back in the game at least.

Seaham rallied after this score and looked to take the game to their hosts, with skipper Ben Bell and front rowers Barry Siddle and Dan Cahill leading from the front. However, it was to be Prudhoes day and they were happy to avenge the reversal theyd suffered way back in September.

Full Time: Prudhoe & Stocksfield (18) SEAHAM (5)

Seaham chairman Neil Roseberry tried to remain philosophical in the wake of his sides first league reversal since September...

I think our lads may have underestimated their hosts today; particularly if the first quarter of the game was anything to go by, when all of the damage was done. The difference between the two teams during that first half was their contrasting abilities to defend and also to convert pressure into points.

The measure of our character will be how we react to our first league defeat since September. Our lads are going to have to bounce straight back next weekend when we entertain Jarrovians. I have every faith in our ability to show their mettle and keep winning our games.

Our lead at the top of the league is now down to a slender four points, with Prudhoe having a game in hand. However, theyve got to win that game yet, and nothing is certain in this division. The remainder of the season is going to be very interesting indeed.

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