Gos pay for slow start
By Derek Reid
Comeback not enough for more points
With the temperature dropping sharply since last week Gosforth kicked off into the crosswind. Unfortunately the early play was littered with some inaccuracies by the home side against a confident Sunderland. These, along with some ineffectual tackling, saw the visitors build up a bonus-point lead within the first twenty minutes. The first score was by Martin Watt on six minutes; a fleet-footed effort by Marc Edmundson on thirteen and fifteen; and, finally, by Fletcher Jackson on twenty. Fortunately for Gos none of these were converted and seemed to wake us up somewhat. With our first incursion into the Sunderland 22, a concerted forward drive saw skipper, Andy Black
, crash over the line and the try was converted well by Mark Anderson
to bring the score back to 7-20 on 26 minutes. Gos kept up the pressure until the 34th minute, when an excellent run by winger, Joe Morris, was carried on with a telling injection of pace by centre, Ryan Gillespie
, who fed the other winger, Kieron Locke
, on the opposite wing. With still quite a bit to do, Kieron crossed and made his way to the posts, enabling Anderson to convert more easily (14-20). Despite a couple more forays towards the Sunderland line, the score was to remain the same until half-time.
The second half continued in a similar way until, in the 47th minute, a strange passage of play saw a deep crossfield kick by Mark Anderson
just crossing the Sunderland try-line with only a few inches to spare before going into touch-in-goal. Kieron Locke
showed the benefit of not giving up a seemingly lost cause, as the covering Sunderland player was caught in two minds and failed to secure the ball for Kieron to touch down. The difficult conversion attempt into the wind by Mark Anderson
just fell short to leave the score at a tantalising 19-20. Sunderland were to stretch their lead to four points with a successful penalty from fullback, Leon Ryan on 51 minutes. The score stayed at 19-23 until Martin Watt was to cross for his second try of the game and extend the visitors' lead to 19-28 with eight minutes to go. This lead was to stretch to 19-35, when hooker, Peter Harrison, broke a would-be tackle to score by the posts. Leon Ryan converted with only three minutes to go to put the result beyond doubt. It looked as if Gos were to come away empty handed. but, from the resulting kick-off Andrew Camplejohn
took the ball on the run to set up Gos on the Sunderland 5 metres line. A wayward throw by the hooker landed in the hands of replacement, Jack Davies
, who, gratefully, opened his scoring account for Gos. His bonus-point try from wide out was well converted by Mark Anderson
to leave the final score at 26-35. So near but yet so far!! Some serious work will have to be put in for the trip to runaway leaders, Whitley Bay Rockcliff, next Saturday. NB Kick-off is at 2.15pm.