Comeback proves too late as Fryston Warriors pay penalty for indiscipline
Fryston Warriors only had themselves to blame as they suffered their first defeat of the season in the Pennine League when going down 23-14 at home to Drighlington.
It was a game of two halves in which they gave away too many penalties in the first to go in 10 points behind at the break.
Drighlington were admirably led by their half-backs with Joe Sanderson in particular dictating everything they did and with a massive penalty count in their favour they punished Fryston.
The visitors opened the scoring through centre Dan Sanderson after they created an overlap for him to score out wide. Joe Sanderson added the conversion.
To their credit, Fryston, with Lee Land, Connor Jordan and Rhys Bonser all having big games, had their own chances, but Drighlington held out well.
The home team made it easy for them to progress up the field by conceding numerous penalties. Drighlington used this to extend their lead when once again they created an overlap for Sam Markinson to go in at the corner.
The introduction of Lewis Birdsall put some injection into the Fryston attack, but they could not break the solid Drighlington defence before the break.
Fryston came out for the second half and almost immediately put the visitors under intense pressure, forcing a couple of goal-line drop-outs.
But against the run of play Dan Sanderson broke down the left and fed Joe Sanderson to score under the posts. He also added the conversion to make it 16-0.
The Warriors refused to let this setback affect their game and from a Birdsall break they shipped the ball out wide for George Thrower to go in at the corner. Morgan Jones added the conversion.
Fryston sensed that Drighlington were back pedalling and when Jones went in at the corner the game was in the balance.
The hosts were punishing every error that Drighlington were making and Kieran Purdy had the line at his mercy, but somehow could not get the ball down, followed by Rhys Bonser stretching out to score and the ball being knocked from his hands.
Drighlington sensed that they had to do something to ease the pressure they were under and the next time they came down field they opted for a Joe Sanderson drop-goal even though there were 20 minutes left.
This dented Fryston’s spirit for a while and Drig capitalised when Ryan Wilks crashed over to score with Sanderson adding the conversion.
The Warriors’ never say die attitude came out as Lee Land took the ball at speed to score out wide, but time had run out for them.
Fryston’s man of the match, sponsored by Martin Oxtoby, was won by Birdsall who was a threat every time he had the ball. He was well supported by Lee Land and Connor Jones.
Fryston are at home again this Saturday when they host Hanging Heaton, kick-off 2.30pm.