Horden’s unbeaten start to the Durham/Northumberland Division One season came to a shuddering halt as they lost heavily in the battle of the top sides, 66-19 at Novocastrians on Saturday.
Novos scored at almost a point-per-minute in the first half – including two interception tries – and continued in the same vein after the interval.
Horden head coach Glenn Bowman admitted there is much work to do ahead of this Saturday’s home match with Ryton.
“I expected a big test but what we got was a lesson,” he said. “You can’t win rugby games if you can’t keep hold of the ball and don’t make your tackles. We didn’t do either well enough. We made lots of errors but that takes nothing away from Novos, they were the far better side.”
Ironically, Horden started well enough, with winger Cameron hauled down just short on the left after good hands set him free. Jack McCallum then broke through and made 30 metres.
But Novos rattled off four tries and while a charge down by Chris Reilly set up Carl Brown to pull one back, the Newcastle side scored two more tries before half-time to lead 38-7.
David Heckles was on the scoresheet for Horden after the break, but Novos were regular visitors across the opposition line again to pass the half century with ease.