Kirkby Lonsdale 17-31 Ilkley

Scott Armstrong.
Scott Armstrong.
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Kirkby Lonsdale scored three tries late on but it wasn’t enough to avoid defeat as they went down 31-17 at home to Ilkley.

Kirkby were still carrying injuries and unavailabilities into this game but hooker Dan Armistead had recovered from the hit he took at Kendal.

Mike Fearon and skipper Dave Barton also returned from earlier injuries and a slightly reshuffled side saw Ryan Terry in his more accustomed position at full back with Scott Armstrong starting for the first time this season in his more preferred position on the wing.

Ilkley kicked off towards the town in overcast but benign conditions and applied the early pressure.

A kickable penalty was spurned in favour of an attacking lineout but the home defence held firm and Kirkby worked their way up field but lost possession and with 16 minutes played a couple of missed tackles saw the visitors run in from halfway to score an unconverted try.

Ten minutes later a straight yellow card for a technical offence in midfield saw Kirkby’s normally saintly Craig Galbraith in the bin for 10 minutes.

A man down and struggling with a high penalty count against which kept Ilkley on the front foot all day Kirkby were again under the cosh with 30 minutes played.

Ilkley attacked and another missed tackle let them in for their second try, this time converted to make the score 12-0.

Full back Ryan Terry then also got the wrong side of the referee when he chased his own high kick out of defence and went for a 50-50 ball in the air but it was deemed an illegal tackle and he joined Galbraith in the bin.

With a two-man advantage Ilkley didn’t have too much difficulty scoring their third try, the conversion taking them out to 19-0 when the half-time whistle went.

A switch for the second half saw Andrew Bargh come off the bench onto the wing with Armstrong moving in to outside centre, and restored to 15 men Kirkby had the better of the third quarter, but remained pointless.

However, against the run of play, Ilkley got through for another converted try.

At 26-0 with 20 minutes to play the game was somewhat in the bag for the visitors and they hammered the nail in with their fifth try, unconverted to make it 31-0.

It was Kirkby who finished the stronger though as Ilkley wobbled towards the end of the game and the home side scored three tries in the last 15 minutes through Harry Ralston, Armstrong and prop Dan Thompson on the score sheet again. Terry converted one try to make the final score a little more respectable at 

It was a pointless game for Kirkby which now sees them 10th in the league but with a reasonable cushion of points between them and the lower teams.