Ripley Rhinos 1sts 12
Belper 2nds 26
Ripley started 2013 as they finished 2012, with a friendly against Belper 2nds, but this time at Mill Hill School and again they went down to a defeat in a tightly contested game.
Rhinos opened the scoring after strong scrummage work allowed scum half Mitch Wilmott to drive over the line with fly half Dave Trubee slotting the conversion for a 7-0 lead.
Ripley struggled to clear their lines as Belper then attacked and allowed the visitors to level the scores with a converted try.
Solid attacking from the forwards and backs put the maroons in a scoring position and inside-centre Jon Doughty burrowed through to score. Again Ripley couldn’t hold onto the lead and a missed touchfinder allowed Belper to score and see the teams go into half-time locked at 12-12.
A slow start to the second half and weak first-up tackling allowed Belper to score two converted tries and, though they worked hard, Ripley couldn’t get close enough to the Belper line to threaten a comeback and went down 26-12.
This was a match played in excellent spirit and very well refereed. Scrum half Mitch Wilmott again took the BAB Plumbing & Heating man of the match award.
Rhinos 2nds play Dronfield 3rds at Mill Hill School on Saturday. Kick off is at 2.15pm