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Kick off time: 11am
Venue: Wigton (County Cup Final)
Won / drawn / lost: Won
Result: 17 v 5
Half time score: 12 v 5
A glorious day for rugby found the under 16’s starting the club off on a potential hat-trick of cup final wins, with the under 13’s and under 15’s playing later on at Penrith.
Things didn’t start too well though as a lively Penrith side put the Carlisle side on the backfoot, with some foraging play down the right, resulting in a try in the right corner with barely 5mins on the clock.
Credit though to the Carlisle side that they didn’t drop their heads and the forwards were quickly making inroads into the Penrith half, with some good running and offloading from Alex Murray and James Bulman.
The Carlisle side were unlucky not to quickly cancel out the Penrith score when Shepherd lost control of the ball as he was about to dive over the line.
The drop out was soon returned back into the Penrith 22 and with some good hands across the back line Dean Kirsopp was able to break through two tackles to put the Carlisle side level.
This seemed to give the Carlisle side a significant boost and Penrith were having to defend for long periods in their own half. With Carlisle gaining a scrum in the Penrith 22, stand-in scrum half Eric Shaddock, who had barely 2 weeks to learn the position, set the backs off across the left side of the pitch to put Jack Walker in on the left touchline for their second try, converted by Andy Glendinning.
The first half finished with Carlisle trying hard to put pressure on the determined Penrith defence, but were unable to convert this into any further points.
Carlisle started the second half a lot brighter than the first, and the back row of Stuart Cannon, Jack Mitchell and Ben Atkinson were soon creating some ball for the backs to work with. Penrith were having to defend desperately to prevent the Carlisle side scoring again. and trying to work the ball out of a ruck earned our Captain a spell in the sin bin for his efforts.
The next 10 minutes saw Penrith renew their attack on the depleted Carlisle side as they tried to press home their advantage. Only some desperate defending prevented the Penrith side scoring.
With Carlisle seeing out the storm, some inspired tactical kicking by Glendinning put the Carlisle side deep into the Penrith 22m. With the forwards again working hard to secure ball, they worked it wide across the pitch, allowing Mitchell to score a throughly deserved third Carlisle try.
Penrith were never allowed to get back into the game and Carlisle finished the match much the stronger side.
This was a solid performance by the Carlisle side, underlining their improvement as a team this season.
Thanks go to Steve Alecock, Ben Blain, Phil Healey and Chris Kirsopp, for their coaching input this season.
Report sent in by: Bill Glendinning