Batley Boys slay Dragons to maintain promotion hopes

Batley Boys Aaron James looks for a way past Eastmoor defender Michael Jedynak during last Saturday's National Conference Division Three clash at Halifax Road. Pictures: Paul Butterfield
Batley Boys Aaron James looks for a way past Eastmoor defender Michael Jedynak during last Saturday's National Conference Division Three clash at Halifax Road. Pictures: Paul Butterfield

Batley Boys moved to within a point of new National Conference League Division Three leaders Woolston Rovers thanks to a 32-18 victory over second-bottom side Eastmoor Dragons last Saturday.

Woolston took over at the top after defeating previous leaders Hunslet Warriors 28-22.

That result leaves the Boys level on 29 points with Hunslet and just a point behind Woolston following their win against Eastmoor at Halifax Road.

They Warriors have a game in hand, against Salford City Roosters this Saturday.

The Boys were only 20-18 ahead after 65 minutes, the Dragons having posted a try and a conversion by Ady Mulcahy, despite the sin-binning a minute earlier of Jamie Field for use of the head in a tackle.

The Boys pulled clear in the final 15 minutes with Gavin Davis crossing before Field returned and Josh Whitehead racing in with four minutes remaining.

Adam Bingham landed his fifth goal and Luke Sheridan improved the last score.

Whitehead, who had also crossed for a try on the half-hour, was yellow-carded early in the second period for back chat.

Charlie Sandell and Damon Fletcher also touched down for the hosts, while Field and Dalton Mitchell had opened for the Dragons.

Dewsbury Celtic are three points behind the Boys in fourth place after they scored two late tries to snatch a 24-24 draw away to Gateshead Storm.

Anthony Dunford and Charlie Heaton touched down in the last three minutes, with George Senior adding a conversion, to help Celtic recover from 10 points adrift to snatch a share of the spoils.

Jermaine Akaidere had earlier bagged a brace of tries for Celtic, and Billy Yarrow had also scored, with Heaton adding a goal.

The Storm had led through two tries and two goals by Zach Clark, with Jack Rendles also crossing twice and James Pocklington nipping over.

Gateshead’s Luke Banham (late tackle) and Celtic’s Dom Senior (professional foul) received yellow cards as honours ended even.

Celtic are also without a game this weekend and return to action on August 3 when they entertain Drighlington, while Batley Boys face a trip to sixth placed Leigh East looking to maintain the pressure on the top two.

Dewsbury Moor slipped back to the foot of Division One following a 48-8 defeat at home to Oulton Raiders, who eased six points clear of the relegation zone.

Moor were well in the game and only trailed 20-8 as the hour-mark beckoned.

The Raiders produced a late surge to pull clear with tries from Josh Murray, Adrian Holdsworth, Liam Wiggins and Hal Day, with his second, while Will Milner also completed his hat-trick.

Murray completed a seven-goal contribution and Keiron Hainsworth improved the final try.

Max Vernon and George Hirst replied for the Moor, who visit second-bottom Saddleworth Rangers for a crunch clash on Saturday.