WITH both the firsts and thirds game at Ponteland falling victim to the weather, it was Sunderland’s second team who took centre stage in style at Ashbrooke on Saturday.
Rob Stormont’s men put on a comprehensive display for the sizeable crowd, beating Westoe thirds 32-0.
With a squad of 26 named earlier in the week, Stormont had a few selection headaches, but the starting 15 got off to a flying start when centre Gaz Roberts powered through a number of Westoe tacklers to race away and score in the corner early on.
Sunderland were dominant and added to their lead with two quickfire tries later in the half from Andy Mackie and Andy Wordsworth.
Mackie’s try came from a typical run through the heart of the Westoe defence to score under the sticks.
Wordsworth got on the end of a good handling move involving both backs and forwards and was left with the easiest of tasks to cross the line on the left wing.
Unfortunately, the boot of Chris Geehan was wayward, meaning Sunderland went into half-time with a 15-0 lead that could have been even bigger.
Sunderland made a host of changes in the second half, but started in a similar fashion to the first half when Michael Brace rolled back the years, throwing a dummy and gliding through a gaping hole in the Westoe defence to scoot over from 10 metres out.
Sunderland added a fifth try through Paul Hands.
They piled on the pressure through the forwards on the right flank before spinning the ball out to the left.
A superb miss-pass from Gaz Roberts gave Hands the simplest of tasks to stroll over the line untouched.
The scoring was rounded off when Michael Brace again defied his advancing years to wriggle free from a Westoe tackler.
and jink his way home for his second try of the day.
Matt Francis added one second half conversion to make the final score 32-0.