By Adam Whiteside

Huddersfield Underbank Rangers put an end to Thatto Heath Crusaders 100% league record this season with a fine 22-14 victory.

The hosts stormed into an 18-0 lead before the break as Danny Bravo and Austen Barrowclough scored before Kris Harrop finished off a quick breakaway try a minute before the interval.

However Thatto Heath fought back with three tries of their own in the second half with Louis Taylor crossing between two Sean Leicester scores which both came on the back of kicks.

But Richard Pogson’s successful conversions and two extra penalty goals proved to be the difference for Underbank.

A cagey start meant it took twenty minutes before Hooker Stephen Berry fired a low angled kick across the Thatto Heath line and Bravo managed to scoop the ball up and dive over from close range. Pogson followed up with the conversion.

Underbank coach Richard Knight

Thatto Heath began applying a lot of pressure on the Rangers line but Underbank held out before notching back-to-back tries in quick succession at the end of the half. First Barrowclough managed to power his way over from ten yards out before Pogson again converted.

Then, with the last play of the half, Underbank forward Chris Geoghegan broke from inside his own half before finding Harrop in support who raced in under the stick. Pogson’s conversion gave Underbank an 18-point lead at the break.

Underbank also grabbed the first points of the second half when Pogson kicked a penalty goal from twenty metres out which meant the visitors needed four tries to get back in front.

Thatto Heath did begin to mount a late comeback when a low kick from Chris Frodsham was pounced on by centre Leicester who beat two defenders to the ball before planting it down.

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Leicester turned provider for the Crusaders next try as he broke from forty metres out after hitting a short ball at pace. The centre found winger Taylor in support who finished in the corner despite Harrop’s best efforts.

The visitor’s fightback continued with five minutes remaining when Leicester scored his second of the game. Again, it was Frodsham’s kick which created the opportunity before Leicester poked the ball on further before scoring the try himself.

However Thatto Heath couldn’t cap their comeback off and maintain their perfect start to the league season as Pogson kicked another penalty goal with seconds remaining to seal the victory for Underbank.

Underbank: Harrop, England, Chatterton, Druett, England; Dixon, Pogson; Williams, Berry, Tomarchio, Murphy, Bravo, Tahola.

Interchanges: Barrowclough, Geoghegan, Campling, Boothroyd.

Thatto Heath: Quinn, Taylor, Leicester, Houghton, Allen; Wakefield, Frodsham; Ledger, Ashurst, Hesketh, Sutton, Prendergast, Lea.

Interchanges: McDermott, Danger, Stark, Ashurst.