AFTER South Tyneside College RFC gained a narrow victory earlier in the season in their corresponding fixture, Seghill RFC were keen for revenge at a very muddy Welfare Park on Saturday.
But it was the visitors who took the lead after just seven minutes, with try in the left corner after a fine run down the wing.
And although Seghill hit back with a try from fly-half Matthew Sherman, after his powerful run to hold off his tacklers, it was College who dominated the play in the first half.
Seghill lacked discipline, and it was repeated penalties that lead to College’s second try. A converted try followed soon afterwards as Seghill failed to make their tackles and looked to be crumbling.
Eight minutes before half-time the home side were reduced to 14 men when Andrew Stephenson was shown the yellow card, and it was at this point in the game that Seghill began to produce some better rugby, with the pack beginning to dominate at the scrum.
College defended well and maintained their 12-point lead into the break.
The Seghill pack pushed College back again after the interval, and following a lineout deemed unstraight by the referee, Seghill drove the five-metre scrum forward.
When the ball burst free, scrum-half Dan Slater was there to score. Jake Armstrong added the conversion to narrow the deficit to just five points.
All the play was Seghill’s as they looked for a victory, and with just over ten minutes to go, they thought they had levelled the scores when hooker Neil Renney dived over from the ruck.
But the referee disallowed the try for a Seghill player being offside, though after the game he admitted he had made a mistake.
When Seghill complained, he marched them back ten metres, and continued to push them back a total of 30 metres, before yellow carding prop Paul Quick.
College were unable to take advantage of this rare second half foray into the Seghill half, and when James Goodwin, just on as a replacement for Nick Heard on the wing, chipped the ball forward, College were penalised for blocking his run.
As Goodwin took the ball on again, his pass found centre Liam Lonsdale, who ran in for his first try of the season to level the scores.
With only moments remaining, a cool Armstrong slotted over the conversion to secure a victory over the side who are just above them in the table.