Crucial win for Warriors

James Spivey on the charge for Whitehall Warriors
James Spivey on the charge for Whitehall Warriors

LEADERS Whitehall, were playing their final league fixture, and facing the team that yet overtake them due to games in hand, writes David Beaumont.

The opening exchanges were fierce and it took a Baz Stead special to create a try as he sucked in defenders and released the ball to Andrew Johnson, who touched down. Jamie Holroyd added the conversion.

Coach Richard Casanove brought on three replacement forwards including himself to great effect.

Casanove took John Handscomb’s pass and blasted his way through three Farnley defenders for the second try. Holkicked the goal.

Whitehall suffered a blow as Handscomb twisted an ankle and had to retire injured. It upset Warriors’ composure and they gave away a silly penalty for messing about at the play the ball.

Farnley made them pay and put wingman Martyn Mouson in at the corner.

Casanove, however, then took Lee Nellist’s inside pass to score his second try. Holroyd again converted.

Warriors then kept Falcons at bay until half-time.

In the second half, Falcons had a player sin-binned for punching.

Whitehall surged forward and Nellist picked up to steal a try.

He was there again at acting half but this time slipped the ball to James Spivey whocrashed over the line.

At 28-4 down, Farnley changed their tactics and started to play rugby

A purple patch followed as they recorded three converted tries to bring them to within eight points at 28-20 with 15 minutes left on the clock.

Whitehall responded with Big Nat Greenwood scattering defenders and putting the Warriors within striking distance.

Captain Alex Scargill took the ball forward, showed an excellent dummy and scored wide out.

Farnley though stormed back.

The rock solid tackling of Ashley Caine and Luke Seagar kept the Whitehall line intact as they worked their socks off and took the ball upfield.

Stead threw the ball wide and this time Scargill put wingman Ross Williams over in the corner to finally end the Falcon challenge.

The outcome of the league title is now out of Whitehall’s control but they have the chance of getting to the Halifax Handicap Cup Final if they can defeat Brighouse Rangers in Saturday’s semi-final at Hipperholme and Lightcliffe High School (2.30pm).