With Deeside unable to put a team out a few weeks back in the league, this match became a league and cup double header. Ellon on top form, but Deeside had certainly improved as the season continued.
The game started with Ellon making use of their squad and changing a few players about. Deeside took their chance early on and scored an unconverted try, while Ellon secured a penalty conversion by Stewart Cruickshank. Ellon maintained the pressure, and most of possession, while Deeside held strong in defence. Ellon scored close to half time to go in 5 – 10 up.
Lachlan Bridgeford scored a fantastic try early on in the second half which was converted by Cruickshank. Next Nathan Emery went over to score, closely followed by Ali Addy and converted for a 5 – 29 lead and the league bonus point. Ellon pack then took control and pushed over a try which was converted. Finally Deeside took the last try as they scored wide and missed the conversion. Final score 10 – 36.
Ellon stay top of the league unbeaten and progress into the semi-final of the Caley Bowl.
Ellon go into the autumn break now with three weeks break for the Scotland Internationals. Next game is 2nd December away to Moray in probably the toughest game of the season.
In the Youth Lancer Conference, Ellon took on Mackie in the battle at the top of the League. Ellon only won 1 of the 4 fixtures that are counted, in so, slipped to second in the league.
At U18 Ellon went down 41 21 in a tough game, where Ellon just didn’t fire. They lacked defence in the back line and started very poorly. Finishing well, by winning the second half, but not enough. They are second in the league and should gain a National Cup spot.
Similar at U16, Ellon lost 55 14 in a game that frustrated both coaches and players. However, Ellon U16 remain top of the league and look good for a National Cup spot.
At U15 the Ghosts were laid to rest as Ellon U15 beat Mackie!
Ellon and Mackie have an intense rivalry across the whole club, as two local teams who have always competed locally against each other, the rivalry has always been intensified at U15 for some reason.
Ellon U15 have always let this effect their game, until last weekend. As a squad, they worked on playing their style of rugby to the highest standard they could.
On a very cold morning with a stiff breeze blowing Ellon got to choose to play with the wind in the first half. Ellon kicked deep and worked well to retrieve the ball. Both teams battled hard as they fought to control the game. Both sets of forwards ran hard and set up ball for their backs to move. It was a close start to the game. Ellon twice had a chance to score early on, but knocked on twice 5ms from the line.
At the scrum both teams were also even, but well maintained with no penalties given. Ellon won their own scrum on the right, Kai Taylor came in from the wing, cutting between 9 and 10 to receive the ball and run into space at pace, taking on the full back and winning, scoring under the posts a great improvised try. Conversion by Ben Dickie made it 7 – 0.
Ellon made a deep break but were tackled just short, Mackie counter rucked, winning the ball and kicking to clear. They kicked 20m in a good clearance. Ellon took the line out with Lewis Milne throwing in to Dylan Kemp. Taking the ball well, Ellon pack set up a maul, which they had been working on, driving it to the line and scoring via Logan Vavangas. Conversion was missed by Ben Dickie from out wide.
Both teams continue a strong midfield game, but Ellon seemed to have the edge at the ruck and built from this.
Mackie managed to use their backs well and overlapped the Ellon team to score a converted try close to half time. 12 – 7.
Second half, Ellon received the ball well and immediately went in to counter attack mode. Running hard at Mackie and moving the ball. The weather got worse for a while, with driving rain along with the cold. Both sets of players did very well to keep playing such good rugby. Ellon defence were strong and tackled well, stopping Mackie from scoring and running hard back into the weather.
At 45 minutes Mackie were running from deep, when Archie Falconer intercepted the ball and kicked to try and get behind Mackie. A further kick from Adam Fowlie put a chase on between Adam and the Mackie Fullback to see who would reach the ball. Adam Fowlie reached it first and scored. Converted by Ben Dickie. 19 – 7.
Mackie came back strong and through the same strong midfield player they scored their second converted try with 8 minutes left. 19 – 14.
As the clock ran down, Ellon were on top and dominating the game. Mackie tried to clear their try line but under immense pressure from Ellon, they were pinned back and Ellon tackled the player with the ball behind the line and forced a scrum 5m to Ellon. From here Ellon went twice to the right to the side line and then cut back for Reese Melling to score on 59 minutes. Ben Dickie took his full allocated time on the conversion and although he missed it ran the clock out and the game ended with a win for Ellon 24 – 14.
Ellon U15 now move to 2nd in the league, 1 point behind Gordonstoun and joint second with Perthshire, who they play this coming Saturday in Perth.
Mackie matches are always tough and this proved no exception for the U14 lads. Mackie opened the scoring in 3 minutes however Ellon fought straight back attacking into the Mackie half driving forward using the pack. Ellon won a penalty on the five metre line and a tap restart by Ross Stewart who passed to Jamie Brooks charging at pace smashed through the Mackie defence and over the line for the first of his hat-trick! Mackie however bounced right back moving the ball to their fast backs who ran in another try on the wing after 11 minutes. The remainder of the period was fairly evenly contested in both rucks and scrums with neither team managing to break through the middle ground as the forwards won the ball in the rucks and great tackling to disrupt Mackie by Sam Douglas and Ryan Hanton. Ellon then managed to grab the advantage and power towards the Mackie line again, winning another penalty as Mackie continually strayed offside. Ross and Jamie paired up again and Jamie smashed over at short range for his second try just as the period ended. Mackie 6 v Ellon 6, two tries each.
The second period started fairly steadily however the Ellon lads lost their shape a little in the forwards and the backs were getting drawn in, this unfortunately allowed Mackie to run in the first of three tries this period using their fast backs. When Ellon did get the ball they drove through the middle of the park with Daniel Ruddy making a great run however he was taken down by a high tackle 5 metres from the try line however the referee missed this and a penalty was given against Ellon for a hand in the ruck. Mackie scored a further two tries in this period in the 14th and 18th minutes. Period ended Mackie 18 v Ellon 6. This period Mackie scored 3 tries 3 conversions to Ellon 0 tries.
The final period played out with Mackie taking another early two tires in the 6th and 8th minute, however the Ellon lads kept their heads and fighting spirit and dug deep. They started to reorganise themselves and put Mackie under pressure. Again the forwards battled through the middle of the field and this time Felix Middleton scored in the 12th minute for another 3 points to make the score 25 v 9. As the game drew to a close Ellon kept the pressure on against Mackie and Jamie Brooks scored his third try as the game ended. Final score this period Mackie 2 tries 1 conversion to Ellon 2 tries no conversions.
A fairly close game as Ellon matched Mackie with 2 tries each in the first and third periods. Just unfortunately some errors were made in the middle period where Mackie ran in 3 tries.
At U13, the games always result in a draw, despite the actual outcome, so that both teams can play all players and develop the whole squads. Across in Mackie, Ellon U13 used their usual team rotation, played some good rugby, but went down 15 – 0.
Mackie took 12 points and Ellon 8 this weekend. Mackie sit top of the overall league, with Ellon 2 points behind! Going to be a close end to the League.
Ellon away to Perthshire this coming weekend.
Ellon Girls played this weekend again as part of Grampian Girls. Ellon took 12 to Perth from a total of 20 Grampian Girls. Making up half the U15 and all but 2 of the U18. Some of the stuff they are working on at training is starting to pay off with all the girls wiping out opposition players at the breakdown, clear-outs are becoming a reality. Passing is improving and a good number of offloads in contact today. Still work to do but great to see all the girls enjoying their rugby.
Updated 08:47 - 16 Jan 2018 by Matt Pearce
They competed in the last round of the North Girls Merit Conference. Due to low number of U18 from all clubs a 7 a side was all that could be played. For U15s Grampian Girls travelled with 12 and Highland with 15 so a full 13 a side game was possible thanks to the involvement of some Perth girls.
In the U18 match it was definitely a game of two halves with 6 tries to zero down at half time. After a bit of re-organisation Grampian Girls lost the second half 4 tries to 1 but with a much-improved performance. Playing 7s worked in the opposition favour with them having more players suited to back play.
The U15s put in a thoroughly dominant display with some very powerful running from the forwards and some excellent passing and speed of movement displayed across the back line. All the U15s played well around the breakdown and they turned over ball regularly. Again at least 5 of the tries came from moves that saw the ball moved from breakdown to wings and scores down the outside. The final score was 77-19.
Next up should be games against clubs sides from the West which should mean full team turnouts from the opposition.