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Your News National League 2 North review

Hull Ionians cemented their hold on second place in the SSE National Two North table with a fiercely contested win away to their nearest rivals Darlington Mowden Park. Saturday’s top-of-the-table clash drew another very respectable crowd to the Northern Echo Arena and it was the visitors who took control of the game from the off. Tries from Joe Sanders, Stephen Johnson and Kerry Wood helped establish a 22-8 lead, and there was further woe for DMP when winger Shaun McCartney was sent off on 55 minutes. However, shortly afterwards, the numbers were even again when Joe Martin saw red for his part in an ugly fracas. DMP responded the better of the two sides to being a man down and tries from Chris McTurk, Cameron Mitchell and Luke Wishnowsky made for a tense finish. But it was too little, too late and Ionians hung on for a 28-27 win.

Another ‘one-point thriller’ took place at Lightfoot Green, where fourth-placed Preston Grasshoppers edged out Sheffield Tigers, 27-26. ‘Hoppers took the lead through Andrew Irving’s try in the fourth minute and never relinquished their advantage although they were pushed all the way by a Tigers side that outscored them on the try count, four to three. Full-back Sean Taylor was the star of the show for ‘Hoppers with a try, three conversions and two penalties.

Leicester Lions are one place and three points behind ‘Hoppers following a 25-19 success at Birmingham & Solihull – their sixth win on the bounce. Hooker John Williamson sealed victory for the Lions with two tries in the space of six second-half minutes.

Bromsgrove turned in a good second-half display to record a bonus-point win against Luctonians at Finstall Park. It was all to play for with just one point separating the sides at the break, but the home side turned on the style thereafter to win 39-15. Bromsgrove scored five tries in total while all of Luctonians’ points came from the boot of centre John Morris who struck five penalty goals.

Stockport moved off the bottom of the table with a bonus-point win at home to Caldy. Flanker Kieran Hibbs scored twice for the home side who remain in the relegation zone and still some 16 points adrift of safety.

Round 20 results

Bromsgrove 39 - 15 Luctonians

Preston Grasshoppers 27 - 26 Sheffield Tigers

Darlington Mowden Park 27 - 28 Hull Ionians

Birmingham & Solihull 19 - 25 Leicester Lions

Stockport 29 - 14 Caldy

Round 21 fixtures, Saturday February 16

Hull Vs. Birmingham & Solihull 14:00

Stockport Vs. Hull Ionians 14:00

Bromsgrove Vs. Sheffield Tigers 14:15

Caldy Vs. Leicester Lions 14:15

Dudley Kingswinford Vs. Westoe 14:15

Luctonians Vs. Darlington Mowden Park 14:15

Otley Vs. Stourbridge 14:15

Huddersfield Vs. Preston Grasshoppers 15:00

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