A League win at last!!
By Jeremy Evans
The U15s finish their league campaign with a win
We welcomed Guernsey to a wet, windy and muddy Steel Cross for our final league match of the season.
It's been a rebuilding season so it was particularly pleasing to be able to field a squad of 17 U15s. For our first league match in September we had just 11 and have been leaning on the U14s to help us out all season so far. That was the first small victory for the squad, before the kick off!
When kick off came it was in conditions better suited to big snorkelling but both teams got into the game. Early possession and territory was with the home team. One of the key targets the Crowborough boys had set themselves was to keep a clean sheet for at least 20 minutes. They achieved that and grabbed the first points when Daniel Larionov charged over under the posts after 25 minutes with the try being converted by full-back Luke Maker to go into to the lead at 7-0.
Some noticeable stealing of the ball from opposition hands by Josh Radford playing at 12 kept possession coming back the Crowborough way to see out the half.
The second half opened with Josh Rhodes charging clear from 30 metres out to gallop home and slide in the 2nd score for the home team, again converted by Luke. 14-0.
It was to be expected that the visitors would come back hard and indeed they did, spending several minutes camped on our 5m line with a couple of opportunities not sticking, eventually they got over the line to narrow the deficit 14-5.
Once again Guernsey came charging back and made some strong runs through the centre of the pitch to test the home defence which held firm for another 15 minutes before a crack appeared on 26 minutes and the visitors claimed another try under the posts which was converted to leave a nervous final 4 minutes with the scores poised at 14-12.
A quick re-shuffle when scrum half Joe Tolkein went over on his ankle (having had a great game) moved David - making his debut at 10 - move back to his more accostomed role at 9 with Luke moving to 10 and the rest of the backline re-jigging accordingly.
The boys controlled the ball well and worked their way inside the opposition half when David took the box-kick option that left the coaches chewing their fingernails as the ball hung in the air with Toby giving chase. The Guernsey winger took an excellent catch and avoided the oncoming Toby, only to met by a charging Josh Rhodes who tackled hard and caused the ball to be spilled forward. The following scrum to the home team saw the ball moved down the line before an infringement by the visitors gave Crowborough the chance to finish off the game and claim the win.