YMCA’s ‘new kids on the block’ acquitted themselves well, but were ultimately undone by weight and experience at Malton & Norton, where they went down 33-22 in Yorkshire I.
Due to unavailability and injury, coach Carl Thewlis picked SEVEN of last year’s Under 17 side.
And although they showed they are eager to step up and form the nucleus of a good young side, their lack of physical presence and inexperience at this level was always going to be a factor.
With the ball in their hands, the YM backs always looked likely to make something happen, but in the pack, where they were conceding up to two stones a man in weight, it was obvious the home side were going to have the upper hand.
YM’s leading tryscorer David Rees (six this season) added another for good measure before his imminent departure down south, when he cleverly chipped the on-rushing full-back and won the foot race for another trademark try wide out on the right wing to give the visitors an early lead.
However, a penalty for Malton full-back Williams and a try by hooker Carl Muscroft, who scooped up a lucky bounce which evaded both YM full-back Chris Belton and new winger Gareth Greenwood to race 35m to score near the left touchline, put the home team ahead.
The home side were using their forwards, while YM were relying on the pace of their backs, but against the run of play Malton conjured up a try out of defence which ended with centre Mosey scoring in the corner, which this time Williams converted to put daylight between the sides at 15-5.
With half time looming, YM worked the ball along the line, leaving Greenwood just enough space to jink inside the cover and score in the corner, and Gavin Stead added a great conversion to keep YM well in the game at the break.
And when Stead also added a penalty shortly after the restart, and was followed by a try from scrum half Ben Wolfe, who charged down a clearance kick and downed it over the line, added to by Stead’s goal, it looked as though the visitors may pull it off.
But as the game progressed further, Malton slowed it down, by keeping it among their forwards and grinding the game out.
And it proved a successful tactic as YM conceded three points from a penalty for being offside and then allowed a soft score under the posts, which Williams converted
YM were now starting to wilt under the pressure and as the Malton pack drove towards the YM line, their skipper Andy Mitchell forced his way over wide out to put the game out of reach.
YMCA: Belton, Rees, Stead, Greenwood, Ryder, Wolfe, Williams, Van Niekirk, Joblin, Farringdon, Dyke (Stuart), Housley, Anderson, Dyke (Stephen), Walker. Subs: Marshall, Hodge, Dalton.