HORDEN produced the mother of all comebacks to win a Durham Northumberland One epic 30-27 at Welfare Park.
All looked lost for Glenn Bowman and Dave Turner’s side after trailing 20-0 and 27-7 to an adventurous and young Ponteland who belied their lower-table status with some breathtaking rugby.
But Horden refused to lie down and die, with full-back David Heckles stealing the points by running in a late try and converting it.
Horden chairman John Groves said: “Ponteland had been involved in some high-scoring games, so we knew they would be dangerous – and that proved the case.
“They played a lovely style of rugby but credit to our lads, they stuck to their task and pulled it off at the end.
“It was a good game.”
For long periods though it seemed like being a black day for the colliery side.
Ponteland raced into a 20-0 lead playing down the bank and Horden’s only first-half response was a Darren Witte try, converted by Heckles.
After the break, the Northumberland side scored again and Horden had a mountain to climb.
But the hosts chipped away at Ponteland and when a kick was charged down, summer signing Michael Bland reacted quickly to touch down.
Heckles converted and added two penalties to cut the deficit to 27-18.
It still looked too much for Horden to pull back as the game entered the last 10 minutes, but last week’s hat-trick hero, Andy Raine, struck when he finished off some good work by the forwards.
And it was left to Heckles to complete the great escape with his late winner.
The result kept Horden in fifth place – just six points behind leaders Darlington – ahead of a visit to Guisborough this Saturday.