New Cramlington Rockets Head Coach, Dave Townend was pleased to see his side record a 48-36 win against Peterlee Pumas at North East Magic Weekend writes Jeff Ball.
In arguably the most entertaining match of the day that saw all NE Premier Division sides play at Kingston Park stadium, it was end to end stuff that had the crowd constantly on their feet.
With several new faces and Townend still introducing his new systems Cramlington struggled to find their rhythm from kick off.
Peterlee started better, charging into a 18-0 lead after half an hour as the orange and blacks were their own worst enemy with a high penalty count and only one completed set of tackles.
Despite an average squad age of only 21, the Rockets, didn’t panic and maturely set about reducing the deficit.
The second half was end to end with both sides trading tries before the superior fitness of the Rockets told in the final 20 minutes allowing them to pull away and record the 48-36 victory.
Head Coach Townend was thrilled to eventually get the win in his first game in charge: “I couldn’t be happier for the lads, but we made hard work of it.
“We knew we were going up against a strong, physical side in Peterlee but it was our own errors that were our undoing.
“Fortunately, the lads settled, stayed positive and stuck to the structures and game plan that we had discussed and we soon closed the gap.
“I won’t single anyone out for praise as this was truly a team effort; the lads put in an outstanding effort and fully deserved to be on the winning side.
“There’s a lot to work on and if we can keep this group of players together, I believe they can do something special and turn a few heads this year.”
In the weekend’s other games, Gateshead Storm beat Durham Tigers 64-12, Durham Demons recorded a 54-18 victory over Catterick Crusaders and in a rerun of last year’s Grand Final, Wallsend Eagles beat reigning champions, Jarrow Vikings 36-20.