Brighouse Rangers 32
A makeshift Rangers team faced promotion hunting Upton from South Yorkshire in what can only be described as a brutal Division One game.
Rangers got on a roll and drew first blood with scrum-half Elliot Briggs jinking his way over with man of the match Darren Robinson converting to take a 6-0 lead.
There was no let up from either side, both intent on winning the physical battle resulting in Upton’s number 12 getting 10 minutes in the bin.
Next on the score sheet after some smart indiviual skill was Chris Scrimshaw, who cleverly kicked the ball over and and ran onto to collect his own kick and go over in the corner, and with Robinson converting from the touchline they led 12-0.
Upton were awarded a scrum and the visitors went over for a soft try on the stroke of half time.
Playing down hill in the second half, Rangers carried on where they left off, but just couldn’t break Upton’s defence.
Then the Upton centre cleverly kicked over himself, and raced away after collecting his own ball to take the score 12-12.
Tiredness was setting in now, with Robinson and Lewis Morris sending probing balls out wide for Andy Collins and Ben Collins to run onto, but dropping the ball was becoming too frequent.
Upton again worked their way up the pitch, and again Rangers gave away a needless penalty on the fifth tackle and Upton’s hooker quickly tapped the ball and jinked his way over to take the lead at 18-12.
Stand-in coach Scott Bradley got his lads to show a lot of courage in the next 10 minutes.
Another skirmish resulted in Alex Dawson getting 10 minutes followed by a big skirmish resulting in half-back Ben Wickens receiving a red card and one of Upton’s players getting 10 minutes.
This seemed to spur Rangers on, and after spilling the ball near Rangers’ line Scrimshaw broke Upton’s line and ran the full length of the pitch for a try which Robinson converted to the delight of the home crowd to take the score to 18-18.
Again Rangers collected the ball, and after a sweeping move from Briggs, Robinson threw a ball out to Morris for him to go over in the corner. Robinson smartly converted from the whitewash to take the lead 24-18.
This took the steam out of Upton and their very boisterous coaching staff, while Rangers saved the best try till last.
Man of the match Robinson collected the ball in his own 20 and dummied inside, avoiding three Upton players, and with wingman Andy Collins following up he smartly passed inside for him to race clear under the sticks, with Robinson converting for rangers to take a 30-18 lead with two minutes to go.
Just to rub salt in the wounds of Upton, Rangers ran straight down the middle from the kick off, which saw Dawson clattered head high, and Robinson calmy slotted anther two points to the sound of the final whistle.
“Every single player played with their hearts on their sleeves and who knows if we had a team to pick like this every week,” said chairman Dave Barnes.
Brighouse Rangers U18s, coached by Lee Robson, beat Myton of Hull in their league play-off semi final.
Having won the league shield earlier in the season, Rangers faced a strong side in the semi final.
Both teams tested each other early on, but Rangers scored three quick tries from Ben Garwood, Andrew Esmond and Ben Wickens, all converted by Garwood, to take an half time lead to 18-0.
Rangers started off the same in the second half, and a jinking run from half-back Esmond saw him go over under the sticks to make it 22-0.
Rangers lost their concentration in defence, and a determined Myton ran in two quick tries to take the score to 22-12.
From a loose ball, Wickens got a pass out wide for Waud to run onto strongly, taking three Myton players with him as he went over the whitewash with Garwood converting again to lead 28-12.
Myton came back again, scoring a nicely worked try to make the score 28-18.
It was non-stop and the impressive Garwood again linked well with his half-backs to run in his second try and last of the game for a rangers win by 34-18.
A feast of rugby is in store at Russell Way on Sunday.
Andrew Ambler’s U14s entertain Oulton Raiders (10.30), then the U18s take on Ovenden (12.30)
Next up is Rangers v Siddal in the Halifax Handicap cup final (2.30).
After the final Rangers’ A team entertain promotion chasing Hunslet Old Boys A on Tuesday in a re-arranged game (7.30), followed by the first team travelling to champions elect Methley Royals on the Wednesday.