West Norfolk leave it late to clinch important win
EASTERN COUNTIES LEAGUE: West Norfolk produced a late surge at Gatehouse Lane to maintain their Division One title charge on Saturday.
Visitors Southwold held an 8-0 lead going into the final 10 minutes after a tough battle in testing conditions but West then showed what they are made of by scoring two converted tries and a penalty to secure a vital 17-8 win.
They had briefly lost top position following the points adjustments that had followed Haverhill's midweek withdrawal from the league but are now back on top, a point clear of Stowmarket, who beat Cantabrigians 31-19 in the division's match of the day.
West started slowly and Southwold's No 8 scored an early unconverted try before a penalty midway through the first half made it 8-0.
The visiting forwards made life tough for West but they stuck to their guns and were rewarded in the 72nd minute when Ross Biggs went over wide out and Ed Maule converted to reduce the deficit to a single point.
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Maule then converted a penalty to give West the lead before again adding the extras two minutes from time after Ally Smith had touched down.
Holt moved up to fourth place after a thumping 65-13 victory over Crusaders at High Kelling.
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Holt played with the wind from the start and were 13-0 up after just 11 minutes with Young kicking a penalty and Jarry-Ryan sprinting in to score the first try try before Such followed suit. Crusaders scored a well taken converted try to reduce the deficit but it wasn't long before Young scored and converted his own try to make it 20-7. Graham Ilsley added his name to the try scorers, with Young converting, before Crusaders twice reduced the deficit with penalties.
After the break Girling made an excellent blindside break from a scrum 30 yards out and raced through to score an unconverted try and two minutes later Such seized on to a loose ball after a clearing kick went wrong to score his second try, with Allen converting.
Tries then came at regular intervals. Young scored two more, Ilsley got his name on the scoresheet again and Woods added his name as well. With Allen converting three of them, Holt's lead stood at a healthy 65-13 with still 14 minutes left to play.
Crusaders camped in the hosts' half for the remainder of the game but could find no way through.