Malton v Ripon Bluebelles 2nd March 2019
By Jay Chester-Bristow
Slightly damp day at Malton.
With the threat of the big storm hitting us this afternoon we set off to Malton expecting a wet one. The team arrived in good spirits, looking forward to the game ahead. Both teams started well, testing each others defences and in the scrums.
Ripon made the first break through the Malton defence ending up being held up over the line, from the resulting 5 metre scrum, following a quick strike from Becca Longster, Donna Chilcott picked and went, managing to get over the line to score the first try of the match. History repeated itself 5 minutes later, when Donna once again pulled the same move giving Ripon their second try bringing the score to 0-10.
Malton tried to keep it close, but their efforts were repelled by the Ripon forwards, Victoria Daley, Caryl-Anne Davies and Liz Clark, forcing them to attempt to go wide to the wing, only to be stopped in their tracks by Sarah Winterschladen who continuously shut them down, they continued to keep the pressure on but were unable to get the ball across the line.
Ripon followed suit by playing the ball wide to the wing, allowing Frann Champion to demonstrate her speed from just short of the half way line, carrying the ball all the way to score under the posts. Converted by Abi Lovel, 0-17. Dot Frankland was the next Ripon player to break for the try line, getting into the 22 but getting hauled down 10 metres from scoring.
Malton wasn't going to make life easy, keeping the pressure on and continuously making a break for Ripons defence, Ripon answered every time keeping the Malton ladies at bay. Pushing the game back into Maltons half, the ever present Caryl-Anne Davies was there to plough her way through the disorganised Malton defence to score Ripons forth, enabling Ripon to go into half time with the score at 0-22.
The second half started with some strong carries from Hayley Williams and Clare Collins resulting in a quick ball from Zoe Umpleby to set up Lisa Walker who broke through Maltons defences and scored on her very first full match ever. Not content with that achievement she tried to replicate the move a second time, being denied her second try just metres from the line, 0-27.
Good hands by the centre partnership of Kathryn Barrett and Lauryn Corbett saw us on Maltons try line once more, but an unfortunate knock on gave Malton the scrum on the 5 metre line, a wayward kick handed Frann Champion the opportunity to deliver the ball over the line for her second try of the game, with a successful conversion from Abi Lovel giving Ripon a comfortable lead at 0-34.
Not content to rest the Ripon women continued to push forward, keeping the pressure on, but we have to give Malton their due, they did not give up and kept pushing back, making Ripon fight for the ground they gained. Not content with her 2 existing tries, Frann Champion broke through Maltons defence after being set up by the centres, only to be brought down hard on the 5 metre line, unfortunately resulting in an injury seeing her having to leave the field.
The centres continued to work hard with Kathryn setting Lauryn up on a powerful run resulting in her scoring underneath the posts, once again converted by Abi Lovel bring Ripons score to 0-41.
Malton were not content to give up and still continued to push towards Ripons try line, using the last 10 minutes of the game to put pressure on the Ripon defence to attempt to score. Time and again their efforts were thwarted by Ripons forwards who continued to keep them at bay until they finally crossed the line only to be held up by Ripon. The final few minutes of the match saw Malton give a massive effort to fight their way over the line to score directly under the posts giving them the opportunity to convert ending the game with a final score of 7-41.