After an unbeaten run of six wins from six games our Senior Colts finished part one of their season as Preliminary League E champions!
Under the tutelage of Tim Molloy the lads started their campaign on the road against Sedgley Park, who have been a thorn in the side of this team in previous age group campaigns, but it was Tarleton who came out on top at Senior Colt level traveling to Sedgley with a limited squad and coming away with a 17-7 victory showed that the lads where up for the challenge this level.
With match day two classed as a rest week it was on to match day three which was the team’s first game at home and they showed a traveling Whitchurch side why we call it “Fortress Carr Lane.” An outstanding first half performance saw Tarleton put Whitchurch to the sword with an excellent set piece as a foundation, some great handling and attacking lines they were impossible to live with and, despite a spirited late rally from Whitchurch, came out on top with a 27-17 victory.
Match day four saw the Tarleton on the road away at league leaders Wigan. With a reputation for physical strong ball carriers who like to retain ball and run at teams, it would be the lads’ biggest test so far. From the first whistle it was evident that Tarleton were up for to the test, despite the physicality of the Wigan side the lads made sure it wouldn’t be something that could be used against them. By showing a superior skill set and organisation in attack they made it difficult for the Wigan side to utilise their strengths. The only negative to come out the match was the discipline of the Tarleton side meant that Wigan were allowed to score unnecessary points but by sticking to the game plan and showing grit and determination Tarleton came away 25-19 victors.
A disappointing match day five saw Tarleton take the win over Broughton Park by default as Broughton Park where unable to raise a team to travel to Fortress Carr Lane…but as they say “a win is a win.”
After the disappointment of not playing the previous week match day five saw the lads travel up to Fleetwood to take on a side looking to get their first victory of the season by taking the scalp of the unbeaten Tarleton. Unfortunately for Fleetwood it wasn’t to be, from the first whistle Tarleton stuck to the basics well and great handling skills and fantastic running lines resulted in some fantastic team tries. The second half started slowly for Tarleton and they seem to drop their standards as a team spending long periods without the ball it was a frustrating period which saw Fleetwood score some points. In the latter stages of the half Tarleton seemed to switch back on and took control of the game once more showing their class with ball in hand and scoring tries to end the game as 69-12 winners.
Following the previous weeks results match day six was a winner takes all game as Tarleton welcomed Rossendale to Fortress Carr Lane knowing that the winner of the game would finish League Winners and gain promotion for the Conference League part of the season. A big Rossendale pack and hard running centres looked to put Tarleton on the back foot in the early stages of the first half but it was Tarleton who scored first with a well worked try to take the lead. Midway through the first half two penalties where accompanied by yellow cards within minutes of each other leaving the lads on the defence with 12 against 15. Rossendale could smell blood and looked determined to make the numbers game count, but they hadn’t counted on the quality of the Tarleton defence. In the ten minutes the team where two men down they conceded just one try and threatened in attack, this meant the numbers game was lost by Rossendale with them not making the most of a two man advantage and possibly underestimating the Tarleton determination and strength in defence. Going back to 15 men saw Tarleton attack dynamically and boss the set piece with secure lineouts and steals and a well-structured strong scrum setting a platform for a dynamic exciting attack to score tries and cause Rossendale problems. Despite a late flourish from Rossendale the Tarleton defence stood strong and the lads came out 28-15 victors and confirmed their place as League Winners!
After the match Team Manager Janet Jones couldn’t contain her pride in her team saying “We last played this Rossendale side in 2015 and we were well beaten by them. Today demonstrated just how far the lads have progressed as players and a squad our goal was promotion and the lads nailed it I couldn’t be prouder”
Coach Tim Molloy said “The work rate of the lads today was brilliant in attack and defence and it was great to see so many people down to support the lads. Now it’s on to the next chapter it’s a big step up with promotion which means working harder as a squad if we want to achieve the targets we have set ourselves”
Promotion means the team will be in Conference League D and they face a stern test against Aldwinians, Kirkby Lonsdale, Bolton, Newcastle (Staffs), Rochdale and Vale of Lune.
Tim added “Phase one has been achieved now it’s on to phase two and keeping our beaten run going”
Following the conclusion of the Preliminary League stage the lads have a short break before kicking of the Conference League on Sunday 5 November away to Bolton RUFC.