U13’s End the Rugby Season in Style
A bright winter's morning greeted the U13 boys on Saturday as they kicked off their traditional final fixture of the term, Lochinver House. Always a very close and competitive game, the boys knew they had to play to the best of their ability if they were to win. However the game they put on to the delight of the watching spectators was one which surpassed expectations. It was a fantastic game.
It was clear from the very first kick off that it was going to be a fast and physical game with our forwards, ably led by Louis C, immediately putting pressure on their receivers deep in their 22 and refusing to give them any space. Competing at every breakdown, we eventually forced a turnover and scored in the corner through Ben. It was a great start but, if there were any illusions that it was going to be an easy game, they were soon dashed by Lochinver. Their tight head prop, who was superb at the breakdown all day, led an immediate fight back and a try for their outside centre. This pattern continued for the first half with us scoring and then Lochinver equalising. At half time it was three tries apiece and the boys knew that they would have to raise their games to new heights if they were to win. They did.
The second half saw a magnificent effort by all the boys. The forward pack of Toby, Ethan, Alfie, Ralph, Joseph, Eddie and Louis competed for every ball on the floor as well as starting to pick the ball and go themselves, sucking the defence into create more space for the backs. The half back combination of Freddie and George marshalled the game well, dictating the pace of play well and waiting for the right time to wait to unleash the backs as it was clear that Lochinver were struggling to cope with the centre partnership of Charlie's quick feet and Ben's power and athleticism. Between them they scored four tries in the second half and all of the St. Hugh's tries in the game. However, behind them the back three of Matthew, Henry and William could also be considered unlucky not to get on the score sheet with William in particular being especially unlucky that a brilliant solo try was called back for a knock on in the lead up. Lochinver scored a consolation try late on but the final score of 7 tries to 4 was both a fair reflection of the game and a just reward for the effort they put. They gave everything.
It was a fitting end to what has been a good season. Like any seasons there have been highs and lows but to beat both Carswell and Lochinver in the same season has not been done before, testament to the closeness of the team, the leadership of Charlie, and the application they put in every training session to improve their individual skills. Thanks must also go to Joe McDonnell for his enthusiasm on the training field and endless games of touch rugby off it and to former pupil and ex Scottish international Dan Ellkington for the inspiration he gave to the boys every week, We wish him luck when he joins the army in January.