ST JOSEPH’S got their Pennine League Premier Division season off to a flying start with an excellent 36-22 triumph at York side New Earswick All Blacks.
The first half proved to be a tight affair, with the lead changing hands four times.
Rob Joyce opened the scoring with a penalty, but the home side quickly hit back with an unconverted try before Lee St Hilaire crossed for a try, which Joyce converted.
But the All Blacks once again responded with a converted score to nudge 10-8 ahead at the break.
New Earswick continued to dominate for the first 25 minutes of the second half to extend their lead to 22-14.
Fortunately, however, this was the signal for Saints to take the game by the scruff of the neck and make the most of the speed that runs throughout the team.
First, came two tries from Joe Flaherty, one of which was converted by Joyce, before Richard Aka and Alex Brown added further converted scores to take the Huddersfield club ahead.
And St Hilaire then rounded off a magnificent fightback with his second try, which Joyce goaled, to seal a victory in which Aka, Brown and Ben Lewis shared the man-of-the-match award.
Slaithwaite Saracens also opened their League campaign in stunning style as they destroyed Bank Top Harriers 72-6 in Division II.
It took the home side just a few minutes to open their account when hooker Richard Wilde scored near the posts for Richard Flooks to add the extras.
Tries then came at regular intervals, with Flooks scoring twice and Dave Holmes, Mick Bostock and Simon Burkinshaw grabbing one each, all of which were converted to make it 36-6 at the break.
Almost immediately after the restart Flooks went over to complete his hat trick to keep the scoreboard ticking along and make sure none of the first-half momentum was lost.
Flooks’ third was followed up by further scores from Darren Hawkyard (2), Lee McAfferty and two more from Bostock to complete his hat trick.
All the tries were converted to complete an excellent day’s work, with the in-form Flooks leading the way with a personal points haul of 34 from his three tries and 11 goals, while Chris Lodge also added a conversion.
St Joseph’s second string were left frustrated at the weekend as opponents Westgate Wolves A were stuck in traffic on the M62 and were unable to make it to Fartown, resulting in the Division VI fixture being postponed.