There is no stopping Leeds 1st XV as they marched on to another impressive win by defeating Loughborough 1sts 28-15 in an enthralling contest.
Although hamstrung by numerous injuries before and throughout the match, the heroes of Varsity sent out a strong message to the rest of their league by putting Loughborough to the sword in a five-try display.But for long stretches of the first half Loughborough were too strong for the Gryphons as they came to dominate the match despite going 3-0 down thanks to the boot of Leeds’ Alex Lozowski.
There was not much to cheer about for a while, as Leeds were put on the back-foot by a physical Loughborough side who made their pressure count with two quick tries to take a 12-3 lead. A try on the stroke of half-time brought Leeds within four points, though, ensured they remained in a match that had at times looked to be sliding away. A fantastic move left the Loughborough defence sprawling; none more so than the unfortunate full-back who was left flat on his back after being completely out-paced by Leeds try-scorer Alex Beaumont, who dotted down in the far corner to leave the Gryphons 12-8 down at the break.
Leeds soon regained the lead after the interval in a similar fashion to the first try with Ned Browne, who had turned out for the 2nd XV earlier in the day, crashing through the middle of the Loughborough defence before putting Lozowski over in the left corner.
Leeds did not rest on their laurels as they began to dominate an increasingly frustrated Loughborough side, who saw a penalty reversed in their own 22 after resorting to fighting in the ruck in front of the referee. The punches thrown proved not to be one of their most clever moves as Leeds took full advantage, kicking to the corner before flanker Louis Timpany drove over from the resultant maul to lead 18-12.
Although a Loughborough penalty pegged Leeds back, the Gryphons were over the try-line twice more to finish the match in style; with the forwards putting a finishing move to a Lozowski break before captain Will Magie’s ‘garryowen’ led to a fumble that Magie took full advantage of, fly-hacking the ball half of the pitch before touching down to take the score to 28-15.
Next up, the Men’s 1sts face two difficult trips to the North East, first to play Newcastle on the October 24 and then Northumbria on October
Rugby Union 1st
Leeds Uni 28 v 15 L’boro