Horden get things right at Ryton

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HORDEN overcame difficult conditions and opposition to maintain their pursuit of a top four place in Durham Northumberland One, with a 14-10 win at Ryton.

Pleasing on the eye it was not, but Horden emerged with four points from a windswept Barmoor which was the main objective for the Colliery side.

Playing into the wind and up the bank, Horden had the better of the first 20 minutes. It became a game of Ryton kicking deep and Horden running the ball back.

The back three of David Heckles, Craig Jones and Darren Witte, in particular, ran the ball hard, making good ground.

Uncharacteristically, Andrew Turner, back in the starting XV, missed two kicks and the opportunity to take a 6-0 lead.

Ryton showed little real ambition and continued with the kicking game. They got their reward when they intercepted a pass when the visitors attempted to run out of defence and went under the posts to take a 7-0 lead.

At the other end, Andy White made a good individual break just before half-time and made excellent ground into the home 22 before being brought down by what seemed an illegal shoulder charge by the Ryton full-back.

However, the referee ruled otherwise so it stayed 7-0 at half time.

Forward pressure in the second half brought long-range penalty opportunities, both of which Turner converted to make it 7-6.

Horden then took the lead with a further penalty to make it 9-7.

David Mason moved to the wing later on and scored with his first touch.

After good line-out ball and two quick phases the ball was moved wide and good hands by Michael Thompson, Jona Hudson and Michael Turner put Mason into space and he scored in the corner.

A Ryton penalty cut the gap to 14-10 and they pressed in the last five minutes for another score.

But solid defence kept them out despite Horden being down to 14 men, with Andrew Rollins being in the sin bin for handling in the ruck.