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Home > News > Prudhoe & Stocksfield 19 - Seaham 26
Your News Prudhoe & Stocksfield 19 - Seaham 26

After being out of action since their narrowest of wins over Barnard Castle in early January, Seaham were almost relieved to be playing again.

Full back Glen Hardie made a welcome return following his knee injury in the Barny game. The enforced three week rest repaired the damage and his pace and kicking was to have a major impact on the game. Once again, Seaham were short of props so 46-year old Dave Drinkwater made a popular return to their front row.

As expected, Seahams 16th man - their supporters - were in good voice and their vocal attributes spurred them on to a heroic performance. Although Seaham are rooted in the bottom half of the league table, their supporters are amongst the best in the division; they are arguably the loudest.

Seaham started like Trojans and played some good rugby going up the slope. Their efforts resulted in a seventh try of the season for fly half Jack McCallum. This was converted by full back Glen Hardie for a 7-0 lead.

Shortly afterwards a moment of madness saw Seaham number 8 Ryan Pink sent to the sin-bin for punching an opponent. Seaham defended well but succumbed to relentless pressure just before the errant Pink returned to the fray. The hosts were awarded a scrum and shunted the compromised Seaham scrum over their own line for a converted pushover try to level the scores at 7-7.

The hosts seemed buoyed by this score and looked to build on their lead. They were dominant in the line-outs and orchestrated some fine rolling mauls to put the visitors under pressure. A further spell of dominance resulted in an unconverted try and, at this point, P+S looked good value for their 12-7 lead.

Lofty second row Mick Bland was sin-binned around the fifty minute mark for cynically handling in a ruck and preventing fair release. The hosts once again took immediate advantage of their extra man and a converted try was registered to stretch their lead to 19-7.

Perhaps the defining moment of the game occurred when the hosts touched down for what they thought was a crucial fourth try and a valuable bonus point. However, the referee disallowed it and some backchat led to Seaham being awarded a penalty.

Scrum half Brad Green took a quick tap and initiated an enterprising move. Some champagne rugby between Seahams forwards and backs made good ground. Deft handling and support play by Mick Bland and Graham Aldus took them into the P+S 22 and Grant Dixon finished off a fine move to touch down in the left corner for his fourth try of the season. Seaham's followers went absolutely berserk. Hardie missed his conversion attempt from an awkward but Seaham were right back in the game at 19-12.

Straight from the kick off, Dixon took the catch and charged 20 metres upfield before setting up a ruck. The ball was then recycled and distributed through eight pairs of hands before being touched down by number 8 Ryan Pink. The added conversion by Glen Hardie tied the scores at 19-19 and set up a cliff-hanger.

Not for the first time this season, big Chris Bland made some powerful runs down the wing. His pace, strength and athleticism made his conversion from a more familiar position in the second row a seemingly easy transition.

Seaham claimed their first away points of the season when Grant Dixon recorded his second try of the day late on in the game. The big flanker found himself on the end of a flowing move involving big brother John and promising young hooker Kurt Miller. Hardies third conversion of the day took Seaham seven points clear and they braced themselves for a thrilling finale.

The final whistle heralded a first win on Stocksfield soil for the Harbour Lads. Most importantly, their five points gained doubled the gap between them and the bottom three teams and established a 10-point cushion over their nearest rivals, P+S, for a crucial survival place.

For now though, Seaham must come back down to earth quickly because next up is a daunting visit from high-flying Bishop Auckland.

Full Time: Prudhoe & Stocksfield (19) SEAHAM (26)

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