Wakefield Wildcats Under 19's were unable to continue their fine form as they fell to a 20-32 defeat at the hands of Salford Red Devils, on Friday evening.
In a game that neither team could take control of, two late tries from the Red Devils was just enough to edge out a spirited Wildcats side.
The game got off to a decent start for the Wildcats when Remy Grierson was on the end of some nice hands from Tom Megretton and George Lord to cross for the first try. Megretton was unable to convert but the Wildcats were 4-0 up after seven minutes.
Despite a slow start for the visitors, the Wildcats couldn't take advantage by extending their lead. And when Salford started to put pressure on Trinity's try-line, Lewis Fairhurst showed good feet to get them going. Fairhurst converted his own try to put his side 4-6 up after 25 minutes.
From that point, the Red Devils started to play with some confidence and looked dangerous every time they were attacking Wakefield's line.
Their next try came ten minutes later when Lawrence Okawga-Ajwang proved too difficult to stop five metres from the try-line. Fairhurst converted to make the score 4-12 in favour of Salford.
HALF TIME: Wildcats U19's 4-12 Salford U19's.
At the start of the second-half, the Red Devils picked up where they left off as Aaron Moore stepped his way through the Wildcats' defence to extend their lead. Fairhurst was unable to convert on that occasion. 4-16.
Throughout the game, you sensed that if the Wildcats could get down the right end of the field, they had enough quality to post some points on the board. And when Chris Brown received the ball ten metres from the Salford line, he played a lovely pass to the oncoming Aaron Gledhill and the prop-forward got Trinity back into the game. Megretton added the extras. 10-16.
Despite that try, the Wildcats were still unable to get a real grip of the game and allowed Salford to respond straight away. Joel Verite found himself on the end of some fast hands to cross in the corner for Salford's fourth try. Fairhurst was unable to convert. 10-20.
With only 15 minutes left, the Wildcats needed two converted tries to win the game and when Brown went in under the posts, it set up a tense finish. Megretton converted to bring the score to 16-20.
The Wildcats had their tails up and scored the next try through James Batchelor, who has recently signed a four-year full-time deal with the club. Batchelor was in support of a break from Megretton to bring Trinity level. With the scores at 20-20, all eyes were on Megretton, who had the opportunity to nudge the home side ahead with only six minutes remaining. However, the stand-off sliced his conversion attempt wide and the score stayed level at 20-20.
With the Wildcats scoring back-to-back tries, you would've thought that if there was going to be a late winner, they would've got it. But that proved not to be the case and the Red Devils scored two late converted tries through Jack Cottington and the influential Moore to earn theirselves a 20-32 victory
FULL TIME: Wildcats U19's 20-32 Red Devils U19's.
Wildcats: Capless, Grierson, Lord, Senior, Grierson, Megretton, Ackroyd, Gledhill, Moules, Morris, Batchelor, Woofitt, Brown. Interchanges: Blake, Yorke, Metcalfe, Dixon.
Red Devils: Thompson, Verite, Calland, Madders, Knox, Moore, Fairhurst, Bent, Gregory, Scott, Okanga-Ajwang, Hatton, Worrell. Interchanges: Cottington, Brown, Brookhill, Cella.