Garstang Blues made it through to the Quarter Finals of the BEST Shield last Saturday in a thrilling encounter.
The team went into the game confident that they could spring a surprise against a team who currently sit on top of their league with just one defeat all season. The opening period proved that the Blues could compete with their opposition as the game ebbed and flowed with both teams having their moments without being able to get on the scoresheet.
After twenty minutes Lymm managed to create some pressure on the Garstang line and they made this tell as they scored a try under the posts. The conversion was a bit of a shocker which hit the base of the post and this was to prove telling in the final analysis (0-5).
Garstang came straight back at their opposition and they were rewarded when Dan Bolton made a fine midfield break and levelled the scores with a well taken try. Duncan Lambert added the conversion to give Garstang a lead which they would never relinquish (7-5).
Soon after Tom Smeaton got the ball in his own half and found himself with an open field to run into. He got to within a couple of metres of the line but he was hauled down by a fine tackle and the chance was missed.
Just before the interval Garstang extended their lead with an opportunistic try. Ainsley Pye, who is feeling his way back into playing following a serious injury, saw that there was a gap behind the defence following a scrum so he put in a kick for Max Everest to chase. Everest ran hard and got to the ball first and gathered at the second attempt to go over for the try and send the Blues into the break with a 12-5 lead.
Lymm came out for the second half in a determined frame of mind and they immediately struck back with their second try to narrow the gap to 12-10.
The Blues didn’t panic though and they carried on playing in a positive manner which was rewarded when Chris Duda stole the ball from one of the visitors players near his own line and he was able to race through to score under the posts. Lambert added the extras to give Garstang some breathing space on the scoreboard (19-10).
As the clock ran down Garstang looked like they were going to go through without too many problems but when Lymm scored with five minutes to play it set up a very nervy final period.
However, the team played out the last few minutes on the front foot and they held on to seal an excellent win.
The draw for the Quarter Finals have been made and Garstang will play Whitchurch 3rds at home on Saturday February 14.
On January 31 the first XV are again without a game but the Blues are back in league action as they take on Leigh 4ths at home, KO 14:15.
The first team had no game at the weekend but the Sparlings were in action again and they put in another strong showing before going down to Leigh Ladies by 15-7.