Colts. Westoe 37 Carlisle 15

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Saturday 18 October 2009

Carlisle Colts crashed to a third defeat of the season at Westoe on Saturday. As with their previous matches it was a game they controlled for long periods, but a lack of belief and failure to take the chances presented to them cost them in the end.

It was a fine day and firm pitch at Westoe, and Carlisle had the advantage of the slight slope and stiff breeze in the first half. They could not have had a better start, recovering their own kick off and awarded a penalty when Westoe came offside.

Steven Benson slotted the kick to give the visitors a 3-0 lead. Throughout the first period Carisle dominated. The forward effort was immense, with Jordan Coutier and Stephen Hodgkinson to the fore; Westoe were regularly turned over allowing Carlisle to play much of the match in the hosts half. The visitors had four clear opportunities for tries, but contrived to blow them all. Tom Earl expertly collected a Benson crossfield chip but was caught by scrambling defence, Tom Ritchie broke from the back of a scrum but was dragged down just short, Tom Martin was driven into touch a metre, and Aidan Hermeston was held up over the line.

A rare Westoe incursion into the Carlisle half earned them an equalising penalty, before Carlisle finally got a deserved try when James Rocke tapped quickly from a penalty and the Westoe cover was for once too slow and Keiron Little had enough space to score. Half time was 8-3 to the visitors.

But the lead was slender and the second half saw Westoe win more possession, and there backs showed their ability. A break wide on the left was recycled and they crashed over under the posts within three minutes of the restart and the conversion gave them a 10-8 advantage. When Westoe again broke down left and scored a second try Carlisle heads began to drop and the lack of confidence degan to show.

Three further Westoe tries over the following twenty minutes sealed the result. Carlisle got a late consolation when Gary Graham followed up an excellent Mark Watson break to crash over in the corner, a score that was superbly converted from the right touchline by Benson.   

Overall a disappointing result lifted by some excellent individual performances; Adian Hermeston’s outstanding defence earned him the man of the match nomination. The Colts next match is at Morpeth in two weeks. Results in all matches suggest all teams in this league are evenly matched. A win is desperatley needed to lift the teams confidence. 

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