By D Whittle
Huddersfield secured their first ever away win at Westoe and bonus point in a tense affair at Dean Road.
Five tries were enough for victory as ‘Field’s free-flowing backs charged down the slope to put ‘Field in a comfortable position at half-time.
Westoe responded to keep themselves in the game, before scrutinising the Huddersfield defence in the second half, but the Yorkshire side managed to hold on.
Coach Ian Shuttleworth said: “We’ve not won in 10 years here, it’s a bit of a bogey venue for us but it’s a great result to grind it over the line.
The victory keeps Huddersfield one point behind leaders Stockport who also won with a bonus point at Penrith, though ‘Field still have two games in hand.
Head-coach Gareth Lewis said: “We came off the bus and really started ripping into them, unfortunately we couldn’t sustain that but fair play to the lads, they dug in at the death and came out with the five points.
In response to last week, Field came out firing to force a penalty and then used their powerful pack to lead by 10 within the opening minutes.
In control of the game and looking dangerous, Field were guilty of not switching on defensively and soon found themselves trailing as the hosts scored two breakaway tries.
Field’s back’s always looked a threat with the ball in hand, but it was their forward’s that scored again, forcing a penalty try. Their fourth in three games.
Using the slope to their advantage, Field continue to pile forward as Thomas Van Rooyen scored his second try in as many weeks to extend the lead.
Westoe then controversially got themselves back into the game, despite what seemed a clear change in ball, Westoe quickly took the lineout before simply crossing over the line.
But Huddersfield ensured they would go into half time in front, as centre Ben Mitchell and winger Mike Clarke added to ‘Field’s lead.
Playing up the slope second half, ‘Field struggled to get a handle on the ball as tries from Sean Richardson and Andrew Lawson cranked up the pressure, as ‘Field also saw captain Nick Sharpe yellow carded.
But a penalty from Tom Hodson between the tries was enough for ‘Field as they hung on in a nervy second half.
Though ‘Field just managed to win, a few momentary lapses in concentration almost cost them in what was a game of two halves.
Shuttleworth said: “Going down the slope and knowing their own pitch well, they were very much on the front foot chasing the game with nothing to lose. But the boys dug in really well, great spirit, great heart.
But Field’s dynamic back line and forceful forward play continue to push them on to National League III North glory, with just four games remaining.
Captain Nick Sharpe said: “We’re doing well up front, it’s great to see us rumbling over teams and referee’s awarding them, I think two or three of our tries came from out dominance up front.
Huddersfield take on Beverley at home next week, a side who pushed ‘Field all the way earlier this season, as they required a last-minute Giles Hetherington try for victory.
1. Alex Battye
2. James Davies
3. Tony Stringwell
4. Nick Rhodes
5. Gavin Rhodes
6. Bob Sykes
7. Ben Hoyle
8. Nick Sharpe
9. Joel Hinchliffe
10. Tom Hodson
11. Mike Clarke
12. Tom Owen
13. Ben Mitchell
14. Thomas Van Rooyen
15. Elliot Hodgson
16. Ed Birkhead
17. Ross Thornton
18. Giles Hetherington
1. Ramie Elliot
2. Matthew Proctor
3. Gareth Nesbitt
4. Alex Surrey
5. John Younghusband
6. Shaun Richardson
7. Joe McKenzie
8. Scott Powell
9. Matthew Mellish
10. Jordan Carey
11. Dean Holiday
12. Charles Popp
13. James Clarke
14. Andrew Lawson
15. Lome Faatau
16. Dom Connelly
17. Sam Gaff
18. Chris Laycock