PICTURES: Moray Rugby Club end Tennent’s Caledonia North Region Division 2 season on a high with victory over Banff Rugby Club
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Moray completed their Tennent’s Caledonia North Region Division 2 season when they defeated Banff by 41 points to 33 in a thoroughly entertaining game at Banff last Saturday.
The Elgin side kicked off on a great afternoon for running rugby and in the 12th minute, took the lead.
Some good driving play took them to a ruck 10 metres out. Scrum-half Calum Archibald broke blind, drew defenders and slipped the ball to stand-off Rory Millar to dot down an unconverted try.
Four minutes later, they added a second when following a penalty on the half-way, Archibald took a quick penalty and made great ground before releasing the ball to centre Connor McWilliam to score another unconverted try in the corner.
In the 21st minute, Banff replied with an unconverted try, when they stole scrum ball in the Moray 22 and made the line.
Ten minutes later, the away side stretched the lead. A good piece of back play took them to a penalty, 5 metres out. A tap was taken and after a couple of drives, second-row Cameron Morrison-Smith changed direction and drove over the line. Millar added the conversion for a 17-5 Moray lead.
On the stroke of half-time, Moray added their bonus point try. Centre Cameron Hughes ran directly at the defence and in contact put prop Mark Taylor into the gap to make the line for a score of 5-22 at the break.
Banff started the 2nd half brightly scoring a converted try.
In the 53rd minute, Moray wing-forward Calum Caven intercepted in the home half and had the pace to make the line at the posts. Millar added the extras to take the scores to 12-29.
Six minutes later, the Banff side reduced the lead to 19-29 through a driving score by their forwards.
Moray immediately returned to the offensive and forced a penalty in the 22. A quick tap was taken and following a couple of drives, the ball was moved wide to wing Ewan Simpson who had the strength to make the line in the corner. A brilliant touchline conversion from Millar made it 19-36.
In the 66th minute, the Elgin side added a seventh. A mazy run by Archibald left defenders in his wake and a final pass saw wing Ben Taylor make the line for an unconverted try and 19-41.
In the final two minutes and following a number of penalties, Banff scored a couple of converted tries for a final score of Banff 33 Moray 41.
It had been five weeks since their last league game but the Moray side wanted to finish the season on a high and played some good open rugby.
Although all other fixtures have not yet been completed in the league, they will finish in a very creditable third position.
The way the team have played rugby has been very positive and exciting to watch and we all look forward to next season’s league campaign.