UNDERBANK Rangers started their campaign in style with a 34-26 away win over Kippax Knights.
However, it was not until the second half that Rangers, Grand Final runners-up for the past two seasons in the Co-operative RL Conference National, managed to stamp their authority on the game.
The Knights started strongly at the Welfare ground with winger Danny Agar scoring a try after just three minutes after good work by stand off Chris Redfearn and centre Richard Stone.
Underbank responded with prop Craig Williams getting over the line and Neil Barrett added the goal.
Barrett’s kicking game was to prove a major factor as he pinned Kippax back in their own territory, but it was the home side who regained the lead on 14 minutes when Agar and Redfearn traded passes for the latter to go over in the corner.
Rangers went ahead again ten minutes later when centre Nick Briggs went over in the corner and Barrett added the goal with a touchline kick.
Winger Courtney Allette then increased Underbank’s lead, but they went into half-time just two points ahead after Kippax hooker Paul Brown nipped in from acting half back and Gavin Adkin added the goal.
The opening five minutes of the second period proved decisive as Rangers bagged two tries as first Williams and then substitute Chris Geohegan went over.
Agar grabbed a try back for the Knights, but Rangers responded again as Allette scored his second touchdown.
The home side were determined to get something from the game and set up the chance of snatching a win when Stone touched down 14 minutes from time, but Underbank made sure of the victory as winger Richard Aka scored four minutes from time.
Underbank Rangers: Midgley; Allette, Horn, Briggs, Aka; Barrett, Chatterton; Williams, Carroll, Dalby, Senior, Joyce, St Hilaire. Subs (all used): Berry, Boothroyd, Geohagen, Cummings.