SEAHAM suffered semi-final heartbreak when they were beaten 45-13 by Hartlepool BBOB side in the Durham County Junior Cup.
Seaham started strongly and a jinking run by fly-half Jon Dye made good yards and enabled his forwards to drive for the hosts’ line.
Chris Bland and John Dixon linked well but, with a try looking certain, the Brigade number 8 deliberately knocked the ball down to prevent a try and was issued with a yellow card.
A rolling maul was set up and the Seaham forwards drove over the line for Chris Bland to touch down for the first score of the game.
The hosts began to gain a foothold in the game and their hooker crashed over for an equalising try. The added conversion gave the hosts a 7-5 lead.
Seaham were caught flat in defence as Hartlepool charged over for a second converted try to increase the lead to 14-5.
Seaham dug deep to weather the storm and were next on the scoreboard on 27 minutes following several forward drives.
Once again they kicked for touch and skipper Ben Bell set up a rolling maul.
His forwards drove over the line and Chris Bland nailed a second try to reduce the arrears to 14-10.
The game changed for Seaham when they lost Ben Bell to a yellow card.
Brigade took immediate advantage of their extra man and, from the resulting penalty, their hooker charged over for his second try of the match, converted for a 21-10 lead.
Brigade added a fourth converted try when their number 8 crossed in the corner to make it 28-10.
The game was pushed even further away from Seaham five minutes into injury time when Brigade added a fifth try in the corner.
In the second half, Seaham made the next impact on the scoreboard.
Brigade attacked strongly down the centre of the field, but a Barry Morton cover tackle caused a spill.
Graham Aldus scooped up the ball in his own 22, sucked in the tackler then fed full back Graeme Steel, who sprinted 70 metres and under the posts for a try.
Grant Westwick’s conversion brought the score to 33-17 and seemed to breathe life back into the visitors.
Glen Hardie was released by John Dixon, Grant Westwick and Ryan Giblin and he ran under the posts for Seaham’s fourth try.
Grant Westwick’s conversion made it 33-24 with sixteen minutes remaining.
However, within two minutes the hosts restored their 16-point lead when they crossed for a sixth try and conversion to go 40-24 ahead.
A fifth try and conversion by Grant Westwick made it 40-31 going into the last ten minutes to set up a nail-biting finale.
Unfortunately, Brigade secured victory when they scored a very late try to finally put the game to bed.