Eastern Counties Under 13 Competition - Sunday 6th January 2018, Ipswich RFC
By Laura Hudson
Bury consolidated their position as the premier under 13 team in Suffolk with an undefeated performance at the latest Eastern Counties tournament.
Won 5-0 v. Colchester A
Won 4-2 v. Colchester B
Won 2-0 v. Ipswich
Won 5-3 v. Stowmarket
Won 4-0 v. Southwold
Won 4-1 v. Harwich & Dovercourt
After the squad's Autumn success in round one of the Eastern Counties waterfall tournament it was felt that fellow Suffolk teams would have extra motivation to defeat Bury in this second tranche of fixtures. On a damp but mild afternoon at Humber Doucy Lane the large Bury squad rose to this additional challenge to record a perfect record of six wins from six matches and ensure they enter the final under 13 tournament phase as the number one squad in Suffolk.
The first match against Colchester A was opened with a fine blind side try from speedster Luke neal after a strong scrum on the opposition 22. The tries continued to come at regular intervals with the whole team work ethic perhaps best exemplified by the expert clearance of one ruck by a posse of backs led by Jaspar Dawson in the build up to the second try. The best try was saved for last, beautiful hands across the whole back line finishing with Billy Reid touching down in the corner. 5 tries to 0 a good start to the day.
Colchester B were next up and Bury's guts and determination were put to the test when they found themselves 2-1 down with half of the 20 minute match gone. However, coaches and parents should not have been concerned - a great run from Will Hudson-White deep into the opposition 22 set up Freddie Dean to score the equalising try before two further tries completed a 4-2 win. The third match versus Ipswich got off to a great start with a now typical Nico Marchini try, picking up the ball in his own half and touching down after only 19 seconds. Bury had to show a different side to their game as a hard fought and at times scrappy game only resulted in one further try from Vincent La Starza as their commitment did not waver. Strong scrummaging personified by Jake Sadler controlling his opposite prop forward plus a team full of willing tacklers typified by Isaiah Ortiz closed out a tight game.
The fourth match of what was turning into a splendid afternoon again found Bury a try behind early on, this time to a strong Stowmarket team. Once again it was Will Hudson-White who turned catalyst for a great team comeback, on this occasion finishing off his strong running with a fine try from the re-start. This galvanised the team who quickly followed up with two more tries, the first from Finlay Blair who scored an excellent try from his own alert penalty tap and go, before an unstoppable 30 yard run in from Ethan Swan. An enjoyable match finished with Bury running out 5-3 winners.
Southwold were the next opposition, and Vincent La Starza showed how much this tournament meant to the Bury boys with an exuberant celebration after an excellent opening try. Three further tries were added, including a nice finish from livewire Jaspar Dawson after a pass of such exquisite timing by Charles Chapman that it made Coach Chapman well up with pride and the remaining coaching team question where he inherited such skill from.
In the final match of the day Bury completed their perfect record of six wins from six, running out 4-1 winners against Harwich & Dovercourt. Not to be outdone by his twin brother's earlier match turning performances, Angus Hudson scored two great tries with some typically strong running and Alisdair Evans got just rewards for an excellent afternoon's scrummaging with a powerful drive over the line. AustIn Dennis completed the day's scoring with a good finish after a great run from Harry MacGillivray.
On an excellent afternoon tries were scored by Ethan Swan, Vincent La Starza and Angus Hudson (3 each), Freddie Dean, Nico Marchini and Will Hudson-White (2 each), with Luke neal, Isaiah Ortiz, Jack Griggs, Billy Reid, Finlay Blair, Jaspar Dawson, george howard, Alisdair Evans and AustIn Dennis all scoring one a piece. Many thanks to all of the positive support offered by the wonderful parents and congratulations to Ipswich RFC for hosting a fine event. Most praise of all must go to this ever improving group of players who continue to develop and show commitment, enthusiasm and no shortage of skill across the entire squad. Roll on finals day in early March!