Dinnington Rugby Club’s fairytale start to life in North East One continued as they claimed a famous scalp in the first ever game against West Hartlepool.
The Lodge Lane men shut out their visitors in a 13-0 victory that made it two wins from two games at the club’s highest ever league level.
The first 40 minutes of the game were very attritional and there was nothing to separate the sides at half-time.
This was not for the want of trying as Dinnington applied a lot of pressure in the opening quarter of an hour but got nothing for it.
Several times they made drives for the line only to be thwarted five metres short.
West Hartlepool had their moments too but were kept out by some resolute defence from the home side.
Fifteen minutes before half-time Dinnington were just off target with a long-range penalty attempt.
The final minutes of the first half became very fractious and resulted in a melee amongst the forwards which saw a Hartlepool player being sent to the bin.
In the final minute of the half, Dinnington set up a forwards’ drive from just outside the visitor’s 22 but it was stopped five metres out and Hartlepool survived.
Dinnington made the best possible start to the second half as Marlon Miller judged a bouncing ball perfectly to collect and offload, in almost the same movement, to Will Marshall for the opening score of the game.
Jonny West added the conversion.
Dinnington kept the pressure on and six minutes later went further ahead when West landed a penalty.
Hartlepool came back strongly but were kept out by some excellent defence.
Ten minutes from time, a second West penalty put Dinnington 13 points clear but Hartlepool had not finished.
The visitors tried to turn the screw by kicking into the corners and looking to run the ball quickly but each time Dinnington had an answer.
The game finished with Hartlepool being bundled into touch in the corner as Dinnington made sure of a clean sheet.
Dinnington: J.Marshall, Starr, Ross, J.Stimpson, Woodcock, Pilkington, Donnelly, W.Marshall; Reynolds, West (MOM), Levers, Doughty, Rodgers, Miller, T.Stimpson Reps: Beck, Dudley, Longstaffe