Morpeth RFC's losing streak continues as they lose 'double header' match against Northern
Other than a short period halfway during the second period, Northern were well worth their victory. In addition to collecting league points they also progressed in the county cup, with the match carrying a ‘double header’ tag.The sides took to the field with the pitch in remarkable condition considering the recent rain. A real testament to the work and dedication of John Dungait and his team.Morpeth started brightly and after four minutes Jake McKay missed a difficult penalty chance, on one of the few occasions the home backs linked well, with winger Miles Gavaghan running strongly.However, on 12 minutes it was the visitors who scored the first try. It came from a Morpeth error, with confusion reigning under the high ball. Northern regained possession before slick handling created the touchdown. Morpeth tried to gain a foothold in the game, but a mixture of excellent Northern defence and poor handling made life difficult for the home side and it was no surprise when the visitors increased their advantage on 28 minutes. Worse was to come for Morpeth with fly-half Ben Hornby leaving the field with a neck injury. Then, with the final play of the half, a penalty conceded by the home side allowed Northern to stretch their lead further to give a half-time score of 0-17.The second half began with Morpeth trying desperately to get in to the game. Poor kicking didn’t help and whilst they were initially unlucky with the next score when the ball rebounded into a Northern hand, the attack could and should have been repelled. To their immense credit, Morpeth then produced their best efforts. Both second rows, Steven Long and Craig Johnstone, worked exceptionally hard to ignite a pack, together with second-half replacement Michael Craigs. Despite dominating the set scrums, Morpeth didn’t get their just reward until late in the game.A home score finally came on 60 minutes when winger Johnny Arkle finished off an excellent move. A few minutes later, there was cause for home excitement when further pressure resulted in an attacking scrum from which a penalty try was awarded. Northern scored a further on 74 minutes to win 12-29.