Thornhill Trojans’ run in the BARLA National Cup came to a disappointing end as they suffered a 24-14 defeat at the hands of West Hull.
In a cup tie that promised so much, it was only a second half revival from the Trojans that gave the supporters who braved the cold anything to shout about.
The Trojans lacked the suspended Tom Gledhill but welcomed back Danny Ratcliffe and Ryan Fenton to the starting line-up but Thornhill proved their own worst enemy by making a catalogue of errors when in possession of the ball.
These errors presented the visitors with too much advantage at key stages of the game and West Hull made the best of their scoring opportunities when close to the try line.
West Hull were a well drilled unit and knew exactly how to breach the Trojans defence.
A West Hull attack resulted in the visitors being held up over the try line only for Oscar Ellerington to power through a host of would-be Thornhill defenders to score. Scott Partis converted.
Thornhill rallied and tried manfully to unpick the West Hull defence as Danny Ratcliffe created a break only for the move to break down.
Another Thornhill attack created by Will Gledhill appeared to have resulted in Joss Ratcliffe going over for a try in the corner but Thornhill’s celebrations were abruptly ended when the referee waved away the try for a forward pass.
West Hull led 6-0 at the interval but soon increased this lead when scrum-half Scott Partis kicked forward and the Trojans defence stood back.
Partis followed up his own kick perfectly to score between the posts and he converted.
Rather than buckle and give in, the Trojans began to stage an encouraging fight back and finally managed a raid on the West Hull try line.
With the line within striking distance Ryan Fenton powered onto a pass and showed great strength to force his way over from close range for an unconverted try.
The momentum was maintained by Thornhill and Danny Ratcliffe broke clear from the half way line and showed great determination and pace to race away and score a long range try.
George Woodcock converted and the Trojans looked to be staging a brilliant come back.
However, the comeback came to an abrupt end when West Hull’s Ryan Wilson made a strong run for the line. Thornhill defenders were left scattered on the floor by Wilson’s run as he charged over for a try. Partis converted.
Thornhill’s exit from the National Cup was virtually confirmed by West Hull’s next try.
Joss Ratcliffe fumbled a kick to the wing and Louis Crowther finished raced over for a try, which Partis converted.
Thornhill’s never say die attitude paid off when Will Gledhill squeezed over in the corner for an unconverted try.
The Trojans were left to reflect on what might have been and the West Hull side have given them an indication of the standards which need to be attained if further progress is to be made through the National Conference League this season