Heysham Atoms U15 30-28 Blackpool Scorpions U15

Michael Forrest makes a break.
Michael Forrest makes a break.

IN their first home league match Heysham faced the daunting opposition of hitherto unbeaten league leaders Blackpool Scorpions.

The start was ominous. After fielding the kick-off Heysham worked their way comfortably enough upfield but Blackpool countered with a series of handling moves which left Heysham floundering and six points adrift in as many minutes.

A great series of tackles by Connor McIntyre and Mitchell Chapman kept Blackpool in their own half.

A sniping run by Will Hunt put skipper Harrison Dixon into space on the left hand touch line.

In the 50 metre race that followed Harrison out paced the covering Blackpool backs to touch down in the corner.

From the restart Heysham managed one of those game changing plays which alter the course of a match.

Warren Pullen took a difficult catch and did well to retain possession and dummy half Mike Bland set up Heysham’s big second row Fred Clarke on a thundering run.

This play had not gone unnoticed by the Blackpool defence who responded in an equally thunderous tackle.

The resultant crunch must have been heard back on the Golden Mile, but it was the Blackpool second row who bounced and Fred ploughed on to the half-way line before being pulled to the ground by four Blackpool defenders.

A strong run by Aiden Yates followed by a 20m zig-zag try scoring run from Matty Humpage put Heysham into a well deserved lead.

Blackpool responded strongly and set up an attack three metres from the Heysham line.

Desperate to level Blackpool tried to move the ball wide but in an extravagant piece of football Michael Forrest snatched the ball and sprinted the full length of the pitch, out-pacing four Blackpool defenders to score under the posts.

After the interval Blackpool reduced the deficit, only to have it restored by Matty Humpage who slipped through a packed Blackpool defence for his second try which was converted by Will Hunt, giving four conversions from five attempts.

Blackpool fought back and a series of errors from a tiring Heysham side let Blackpool score twice, leaving them needing a touchline conversion to equalise with about 10 minutes to go.

The kick slid wide of Heysham’s posts but from the restart Blackpool stormed back on to the offensive.

Heysham just refused to wilt in the face of wave after wave of Blackpool attacks.

Poor ball retention in the last 10 minutes had cost Heysham their first league game last week and history looked like repeating itself but immense tackling by man of the match Kai Davies and the young Owain Llewellyn somehow kept the Heysham line intact, despite a battering of 18 consecutive defensive plays in the Heysham 20m box.

A fine achievement for a team with less than two months experience.