Vagabonds (Isle of Man) 3 Northwich 30
NORTHWICH turned in their best performance of the season on Saturday to register only their second ever victory at Douglas.
The emphatic victory all but blew away the fog of relegation and the 60-strong Northwich party celebrated long into Sunday morning at the Isle of Man Hilton. If Northwich continue their form, manager Don Phillips is confident they can pick up another four to six points and scale the South Lancs and Cheshire League to a mid-table finish.
Jonathan Simpson controlled the line-out and Olli Watts was impressive in the Northwich back row. It was the superiority of the pack which gave the Northwich backline the opportunity to shine and all four tries - one in the first half and three in the second - were scored by a rampant three-quarter line.
Chris Dale scored just before half time when he latched on to a clever Chas Wood kick ahead. Dean Thompson converted to add to his earlier two penalties. All the Vags could manage was a Bryan Kennah penalty.
Kolo Fifita produced two quality second half tries. His first was made by winger Steve Calbraith and his second was created by full back Andy Joseph who had an outstanding game. Indeed it was a Joseph try which came in between Kolo's tries and again Steve Calbraith made the space to allow Andy to dive over. Dean Thompson converted the last try to complete a fantastic afternoon's work.
Steve Taylor was the home team's choice for man of the match.
The Northwich Ladies team provided a curtain-raiser to the league match with an inaugural challenge game against an Isle of Man team. The Northwich girls set the scene and the standard for the rest of the afternoon with a comfortable 25-10 victory.
Northwich have a pool fixture on Saturday.
Juniors versus Chester: Northwich U12s lost 49-0 and 26-7; U11s won 21-7 (Joe Maddocks 2, Sam Jones tries; Sam Hunt 3 cons) and 26-0 (Jack Vandersteen, Mike Collier, Archie Love, Sam Jones tries; Henry Bellis 2, Matty Riddell cons); U9s lost 7-0 and won 2-1 (Bradley Reid 2).