Scarborough blew away the challenge of Halifax-based Heath RFC running in 12 tries; eight without reply in the second half, with a superb display of handling rugby at a sun drenched Silver Royd - their 79-10 victory a record win for the hosts since their move from Newby.
With skipper Phil Watson sidelined with a facial injury sustained in training during the week, Chris Purdy captained the team from blind-side with Phil Austen moving up to join Charlie Hoggard in the engine room and Sam Warren in the back row.
Ian Williams started his first game back in the side and got on the scoresheet with just over a minute of the game played when a dynamic break by prop Nino Cutino cut a swath through the Heath defence and the Seasiders hooker was on hand to power over in the corner. Centre Tom Ratcliffe added the extras for a 7-0 lead.
Heath came straight back from that reverse and Scarborough strayed offside in front of their own posts; visiting fullback Charlie Lomas kicked the penalty to reduce the arrears in the fourth minute.
The home side replied immediately when wing Graeme Jeffery pounced at a breakdown to sprint down the Scarborough right flank, cut in and score near the posts. Ratcliffe made it 14-3 with the conversion.
Purdy’s men looked to move the ball at every opportunity and the inter-passing between backs and forwards delighted a good Silver Royd turnout.
However when Heath won good ruck ball just outside the home 22, fly-half Giles Hetherington brushed aside a couple of poor tackles to score near the posts. Lomas converted to reduce the arrears to four points in the 14th minute.
Scarborough then had some defending to do but with open-side Ben Wilson, Cutino, prop Paul Taylor, Purdy and Austen grafting hard and half-backs Zbynek Schtuz and Phil Stewart tidying up; fullback Tom Harrison cleared his lines with a massive touch kick deep into Heath territory.
The west Yorkshiremen were finding it difficult to cope with the dynamic offence and aggressive defence of the home side and tries in the 20th and 30th minutes from Ratcliffe and wing Corey Dennis respectively came from turnovers in midfield.
Ratcliffe missed both conversions but slotted a penalty between the tries in the 25th minute for a 27-10 lead at the break.
Scarborough started the second half where they had left off in the first with a try in the 41st minute when another break by Cutino saw the South African break the gain line before the ball was moved through hands for Jeffrey to score in the corner. Ratcliffe just pulled his touchline conversion attempt.
The men from Silver Royd continued to press and good work by Dennis and Jeffrey took them deep into Heath territory where a catch and drive from a lineout following a penalty was moved diagonally from a ruck for livewire Ben Wilson to scamper over on the angle. Ratcliffe converted for 39-10 in the 45th minute.
A procession followed and tries from Cutino, Paul White, Luke Raines and a third for Jeffrey followed in the 50th, 52nd, 54th and 57th minutes respectively; all converted by Ratcliffe, for a 67-10 lead.
The visitors almost managed a second try five minutes from the end when a Scarborough kick was charged down in their own 22 but scrambling defence saved the day and Harrison once more cleared his lines with a massive relieving touch-kick.
And the Seasiders ended the game in style when a searing break from a lineout on the visitors’ 10 metre line saw Harrison cut through what appeared to be half of the Heath side to score in the 78th minute. Ratcliffe missed the difficult wide conversion but made amends a minute later when he broke a couple of tackles near halfway to outstrip the Heath cover on the Scarborough right and score in the corner. Harrison converted from the touchline with the last kick of the match.
This was a truly committed team performance from a Scarborough squad without a weak link on the day.
They were superior to their opponents in every facet of the game and continued with their commitment to Coach Jason Lowde’s all-action handling philosophy; forwards handled like backs and backs applied muscle where necessary, particularly at the break down, where go-forward ball was in plentiful supply thanks to some tremendous line-breaking runs from Cutino, Purdy and Wilson.
Behind the scrum the backs showed a killer instinct pressing home their superiority with panache but without showboating. Tom Harrison had another great afternoon with ball in hand and with his boot; particularly when moved closer to the action.
Next week’s visit to Dukes Park to face Bridlington looks like being a very interesting day out indeed.
Report and Pictures by Dave Campbell
Scarborough: 79 - Tries: Williams 2min, Jeffrey 5, 41 51min, Ratcliffe 20, 79, Dennis 30min, Wilson 45min, Cutino 50min, White 52min, Raines 54min, Harrison 78min Goals: Conversions: Harrison 79min, Ratcliffe: 2, 5, 45, 50, 52, 54, 57min Penalty: Ratcliffe 25min
Heath: 10 - Try: Hetherington 17min Goals: Penalty: Lomas 9min, Conversion: Lomas:17min
Referee: Mr David Downham
Scarborough: Harrison Jeffrey Ratcliffe Parker Dennis Stewart Schutz Cutino Williams Taylor Austen Hoggard Purdy(captain) Wilson Warren subs: Raines White Readman (all used).
Heath: Lomas Clougher Morris Brown Lister Hetherington Walsh MacReady Potick Moore Hunter Cooke Collins Morane Jones.
Scarborough News Man of the Match: Nino Cutino
There were many contenders for the Man-of-the-Match award in a great team performance.
However, for the second game in a row the young South African prop was outstanding for his line breaks which punched holes in a shell-shocked visiting defensive line and his work in the lead up to many of the Scarborough tries.