Year 7 National Cup Semi Final
The Year 7 Rugby League team, today, fell at the final hurdle on their quest for Wembley fame.
Playing a strong team from St Peter's School from Orrell (A town in The Metropolitan Borough of Wigan), Carleton had to defend strongly for the first few minutes before moving down the field and building their own period of pressure in attack. This culminated in Sam Wroe crossing for a try out on the left hand side, which was not converted, leaving the score at 4-0. St Peter's had some hard running forwards, but Carleton were up to the task and managed to keep them in check. Some mishandling by St Peter's left the ball on the ground behind their players but as Ciaran McGuckin made a difficult attempt to scoop up the bouncing ball, he knocked on. Perhaps, in hindsight, he could have hacked on, but it was a valiant attempt to put himself clear to score. Finally though St Peter's crossed under the sticks to score. A successful conversion meant the teams changed ends with the score St Peter's 6 Carleton 4.
The second half started with Carleton spreading the ball well to both sides of the pitch and making good ground every set. Quick play-the-balls by the Carleton team were catching the St Peter's players out and this lead to a number of penalties for offside and interference. As Carleton pressed to overcome the two point defecit, Brad Allsopp appeared to have crossed for a try only for the referee to signal that the ball was held up. Oh for a video referee! Soon after this Brad again went very close from acting half under the sticks but the ball was grounded short and then slipped from his gasp. St Peter's were once again pulled for offside but managed to hold their line secure. After constant Carleton pressure for much of the half St Peter's stand off scooted across the defensive line before straightening and cutting through in the left centre. He was eventually well tackled but the ground that he had made led three tackles later to another try for the team from Wigan. A well kicked conversion meant that Carleton were now two scores behind and athough the half ended, as it had started, with Carleton 'camped' on the opposition line, very good defence from St Peter's meant that the whistle went with the final score 0f 12-4. A neutral spectator would have really enjoyed the game and totally agreed that if played again the result could just as easily be reversed. Surely these teams will meet again in years to come.
The discipline throughout the Carleton team was excellent and the rugby they played was very attractive. Once the disappointment of losing has passed they should take great pride from the level that they have reached and the way they have represented the school.