London Three North East: More home comforts for East London on final day against Stowmarket
PUBLISHED: 10:30 11 April 2017
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Skipper Dan Bracken backs local club to challenge for the title next season after finishing the campaign in third
East London completed their season with a 52-17 victory over Stowmarket to finish third in the London Three North East.
It was the fourteenth win of the campaign from 20 games and marked a successful year for the promoted side.
On Saturday at the Memorial Ground, the hosts struck early through full back Ryan Billinghurst, scoring for the third game in a row. He went over in the right corner on eight minutes, but the conversion was missed.
Individual try of the day came from right wing Corey Griffiths after 13 minutes, as he collected a high clearance from Stowmarket deep inside his own half before heading back towards the half-way line.
He sidestepped one opponent before kicking over the advancing backs deep into the corner.
Griffiths beat two players in a race for the bouncing ball and touched down with fly-half Alan Ferguson converted from the right touchline.
Stowmarket reduced the deficit with an unconverted try on 16 minutes before East London stretched away again nine minutes later.
Replacement prop Adrian Samuel, on for the injured Gary Pearmain, crashed through four players to score from five metres out. Ferguson again converted.
Scrum-half Alex Mylchreest scored on 28 minutes with a break through the centre and Ferguson added the extras.
Number eight Dan Bracken scored on the half-hour, handing off two opponents in the process and once more Ferguson converted for a 33-5 lead at the break.
The lead was extended two minutes into the second-half, as a mazy run by outside centre Andrew Little, the season’s leading try scorer, reaped rewards.
Ferguson converted before the quick feet of Griffiths again bamboozled Stowmarket defenders on 48 minutes and he set up flanker Ed Brown for a try which Ferguson converted.
East London took their foot off the gas and let the visitors in for two tries, one of which was converted.
But the final score of the season was reserved for the home side when Griffiths scored his second try that his all-round performance deserved.
The conversion was missed, but it was of little worry to East London who concluded their campaign on a high.
Skipper Bracken said: “We’ve done so much better this year than we were expecting. We’ve had some great wins and put on some great performances.
“It shows that we don’t need to fear this division and we’re already making plans for next season when winning the league has to be our aim.”
East London: Gary Pearmain, Ben Hogan, Sam Corbett, Matt Lucas, Oliver Hillyer-Riley, Rob Yiannakou, Ed Brown, Dan Bracken, Alex Mylchreest, Alan Ferguson, Mo Akbar, Jono George, Andrew Little, Corey Griffiths, Ryan Billinghurst. Replacements: Adrian Samuel, Sean Ellison, Joe Kelly.