Brilliant Ben leads the way

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SUNDERLAND Under-12s rugby team had mixed fortunes against Durham City and Stockton at Ashbrooke.

Durham struck first, but Ben Hutchinson levelled with an excellent solo try, converted by Michael Holder.

City regained the lead after a good run down the line and though Reece Thompson, Ky Horn and Matthew Clinton all went close, they held on to win 14-7.

Against Stockton, Sunderland got off to a flier when Fletcher Jackson released Hutchinson, who made no mistake for the opening try, converted by Holder.

Hutchinson’s brave charge down led to him doubling the lead before Stockton replied. Late on, Jackson stole the ball and outpaced several defenders to seal a 21-7 win, with Edmundson converting.

Sunderland played another match against Durham. Bradley Wall evaded tackles to break the deadlock, but Durham equalised with a last-gasp try, and converted it to seal a 7-5 success.

H Sunderland Under-9s continued their free flowing, attacking rugby in a hard-fought home clash with Durham City.

Starting slowly, the Ashbrooke side conceded a string of turnovers, as they succumbed 55-15, despite tries from Adam Williams (2) and Aidan Wilkinson.

However, Sunderland clawed their way back to claim a superb 70-70 draw in a second match. Ryan Crossley (6) and Josh Jobling (5) led the scoring, helped by Jack Cahill (2) and Adam Shiels.

Despite a spate of injuries, they againmatched Durham’s big hitters in the third match, with Sunderland edging a 45-40 victory. Joe Cowley (2), Sam Watson, Jobling, Williams and Wilkinson scored.

The final game was 30-30, with Crossley bagging five tries and Cahill one.

H Sunderland Under-10s produced one of their strongest team displays, notching one win out of four against Durham City.

Archie Tiger and Adam Stormont led the way with strong, aggressive running as Oliver Goshorn grabbed six tries.

After a 25-10 win, the Ashbrooke boys were pinned back 30-10, 30-10 and 25-20. Other scorers included Solomon (2), Felix Tomlinson (2), Oliver Beatty and Hal Mitchison.