Brown and Webster touch down as Maroons see off North Shields

The Maroons prepare to stick the ball in at a scrum. Picture by Jenny Brown-Wood.
The Maroons prepare to stick the ball in at a scrum. Picture by Jenny Brown-Wood.

Whitby Maroons started 2018 by hosting North Shields in the hope of avenging the one-point loss in the away fixture earlier in the season.

Before the game, a minute’s silence was held for ex-Whitby player Paul Garbutt, which was impeccably observed by both sides.

Whitby started slowly with some sloppy handling and passive defence meaning the strong North Shields side were able to settle into the game, scoring in the corner to take a 5-0 lead.

The hosts came back strongly with good carrying from the Whitby pack, put them in a good position to control the game in some terrible conditions, forcing North Shields deep into their own half.

Whitby’s territorial dominance eventually told as Luke Brown crashed over to make the score 7-5 at half-time.

The Maroons kicked off the second half looking to continue where they finished the first half.

With set-piece dominance giving Whitby a much needed outlet in possession, eventually the pressure told and Sam Webster scored to make the score 12-5.

North Shields responded well, forcing Whitby to commit a string of penalties for the first time in the game bundling their way over to make the score 12-10 with 20 minutes left.

Whitby replied well with captain Gordon Bland showing great maturity in managing the game to make sure North Shields were never in a position to threaten Whitby’s strong defence.

This helped to make sure Whitby saw the game out with the score staying at 12-10 the start the year off well with a victory.

Man of the match went to Gordon Bland after an impressive performance.