A STIFF half-time talk from coach Carl Thewlis proved very effective as YMCA turned a 12-point deficit into their first Yorkshire I victory of the season.
The home side started well and looked like scoring until Keighley broke away down the left wing through Matt Cox, who sidestepped a defender and raced the length of the field before cutting inside full-back Chris Belton and going under the posts.
Stand-off Alex Brown added the conversion to give the visitors a 7-0 lead which was extended when flanker Lee Gordon hit a gap in YM’s defence to score his side’s second try. And although Brown missed the conversion, Keighley found themselves 12 points to the good at the interval.
A few choice words seemed to work wonders during the break, as YM came out in more determined fashion for the second half.
They almost conceded a third try however, after a wild pass led to an interception, and only a tremendous chase back and tackle from David Rees and Belton prevented Keighley extending their lead, but then it was YM’s turn to intercept.
With Keighley pressing on the home 22, Rees read a pass perfectly, nipped in and sprinted almost the full length of the pitch to go under the sticks, Gavin Stead adding the extras.
The backs were now growing in confidence and began to show what they were capable of, while the forwards dominated in the line-outs and scrums.
New stand-off Paul Williams was instrumental in the next score which brought a try for winger Adam Ryder and on 55 minutes, scrum half Ben Wolfe picked up at the base of a scrum and produced a dummy to wrongfoot the defence and go over, Stead this time making no mistake with the conversion.
It was now one-way traffic and second rower Damian Pearson was next on the scoresheet after good work from Belton, Rees and Wolfe, while the same trio combined minutes later ending with Rees getting his second try of the afternoon.
Finally, playing with some self-belief, YM rounded off the scoring through ever-present No8 Neil Walker. Stead adding his third conversion.
YMCA: Belton (Travis), Franks, Rees, Stead, Ryder; Williams, Wolfe, Van Niekirk, Joblin, Dobson, Whitehead, Pearson, Coulson (Dyke), Anderson, Walker.