A huge crowd were present on a remarkably calm evening to witness our first floodlit league game . The pitch was in remarkably good condition , considering the amount of rain we have had during the week.
There was little between the two sides in the early stages with defences being on top. After ten minutes Stockton fly half Stephen Jones slotted a penalty and the score remained 3-0 until half time. Despite the lack of points it was a really competitive game with both sides showing why they are towards the top of the league table .
Stockton were in the ascendancy at the start of the second half when Alex Osifo raced 50 metres down the right wing to touch down and Stephen Jones converted. Then Stockton Captain Charlie Doherty forced his way over on the left after several forward drives but the conversion went wide so Stockton were leading 15-0 .
Stockton then lost tight head prop Rhys McHugh to a yellow card for knocking the ball away when Boro were taking a quick penalty . Stockton then actually advanced their lead further with two Stephen Jones penalties to lead 21-0 with 15 minutes to go .
But Boro started their comeback with a driven line out which lead to a try from 30 metres out which Andy Baggett converted . And then a sniping break from the Boro scrum half produced another converted try with a minute to go.
Could Boro snatch a draw in the dying seconds ?
The Stockton defence was having none of it ,and from the restart they drove Boro back to their own goal line and eventually Boro conceded a penalty. Stockton kicked to ball out to seal a notable 21-14 victory. At least Boro secured a losing bonus point for their magnificent efforts.
Referee Kevin Allison was full of praise for the way both teams conducted themselves in this full on derby encounter .And the same can be said for the supporters too. A great evening !
We believe that Stockton's last win over Boro was on 8 April 2000- by 23-18 at Acklam Park in North 1 League ( Level 5) . And Skav can remember that he played in it !