Acorn 36 Normanton Knights 16
Acorn made it three wins in a row with arguably their best second half home performance of the season, when they scored 20 unanswered points to win
York's top amateur outfit Acorn , made it three wins in a row with arguably their best second half home performance of the season, when they scored 20 unanswered points to win 36 -16 against high flying Normanton in the NCL 1st Division after the two sides had been locked at 16 apiece at the end of the first half.
After a bright opening ,Acorn suddenly found themselves behind - when on 5 minutes in wet conditions they failed to hold onto the ball and the visitors were able to have 3 sets on or near the Acorn try line and eventually centre Butterfield crashed over for a try in the left hand corner - which fellow centre Taylor then added the extras to put Normanton 0-6 up.
To Acorns credit they didn't allow this to upset them too much and on 8 minutes they drew level when inform second rower Brandon Harris charged over for a try which man of the match Anthony Chilton added the extras to giving us a 6-6 scoreline.
On 13 minutes Acorn were punished for lack of numbers out on the right hand side, that saw Taylor notch a try in the corner , which he himself added the conversion to - putting his side 6- 12 in front.
On 19 minutes after going close themselves, Acorn started their next defensive set on the Normanton try line and excellent defensive pressure early in the set, saw Acorn centre Downes execute a smart one on one ball steal play and he romped over for an unconverted score and narrow the defecit to 10 - 12.
Acorn then moved in front for the first time on 25 minutes, when a high bomb in the Normanton 20 was misjudged by the visitors defence and quick thinking Brandon Harris reacted quickest to pick up and race over for his second try of the half.
Chilton A added the conversion to put Acorn 16 - 12 to the good.
After a period of good play close to the Normanton try line, Acorn eventually saw the ball caught on the full in the in goal area , resulting in a tap 20 for the visitors.
Acorn then committed the cardinal sin of not watching the play by having their backs to the action, and Normanton took full advantage by taking a quick tap restart and Tuckerman raced through a huge gap before being dragged down just over the half way line by a great cover tackle from full back Budd.
A kick into the corner moments later saw winger Joe Crossland catch the ball and score an unconverted 36th minute try to level the scores up at 16-16 .
Whatever was said at half time, by coaches Reintoul & Kay certainly had the desired effect as Acorn came out after the break a much more polished outfit both in attack and defence.
They made their new found superiority count as early as the 45th minute, when lively replacement hooker Nick Speck darted from acting half to race over from 15 meters for a try goaled by Chilton A to put the home side into a 22-16 lead.
The crucial moment and gamebreaker for me ,was a combination of Acorn withstanding a Normanton attack that included 3 repeat sets and then on 57 minutes they complimented their defensive qualities perfectly by notching points at the other end, when the impressive Downes smashed his way over for an unconverted try out wide, that put the blue and golds 26 - 16 in front.
Smart game management saw Acorn increase their lead to 2 converted scores at 28 - 16 when Chilton A added a 60th minute penalty as the visitors started to lose their composure.
The games final try score came on 66 minutes when Chilton A managed to hang on to an awkward pass close to the visitors try line, before completing a hit and spin movement and going in for a try which he himself added the conversion to and thus giving Acorn match winning lead of 34 -16.
Chilton A completed the Acorn scoring with a 73rd minute penalty goal that gave him a personal points tally of 16 points as he once again proved Normantons nemesis ala play off final win at Widnes two seasons ago.
Along with Chilton A, Acorn were well served by powerful winger Stewart, impressive center Downes, props Stubbs & Mortimer and loose forward Tim Elliott - whilst forwards Endersby & Byrne's gave good cameo rolls when coming off the bench.
All in all a satisfactory day for York's premier amateur outfit and one they will hope to build on when they travel to rejuvenated Shaw Cross in two weeks time.