Northumbria Sport M1 head of rugby Darren Fearn has hailed his sides performance after they secured a magnificent 41-5 bonus point win over a haphazard Nottingham Trent side under the lights of Kingston Park.
Heading into the tie, Northumbria were good spirits having secured a famous 24-7 win away at local rivals Durham just a week prior.
Fearn’s side got off to a rampant start with skipper Oli Robinson taking a quick tap penalty in front of the Trent posts to dot down, giving the hosts an early lead.
And their dominance didn’t stop there, with flanker George Bordill, scrum-half Joe Pickering, and winger Charlie Parkhouse all scoring tries to give Northumbria an unassailable 29-0 lead heading into half time.
While in the second half Northumbria took their foot off the gas a little, they were still able to add to their points tally thanks to scores from Yaree Fantini and Josh Rudling.
And when the full-time whistle went, an elated Fearn could barely contain his delight with his sides seven try performance.
“I was proud as punch with our performance,” said Fearn.
“From one to 23 everyone was outstanding and there was no drop-in intensity at any point.
“They [Nottingham Trent] came out of the blocks flying in the second half and we defended really well.
“We stayed in every moment we were in – every dropped ball we reacted, we had front rowers pouncing on the ball, or giving clever offloads.
“It was a little annoying to concede their try from an error but I thought our defence was fantastic. We were excellent and credit must go to all the boys – they were outstanding.
“As a whole, it was just a really good performance.
“I was chuffed to bits with the lads performance.”
And Fearn also paid tribute to scrum-halves Joe Pickering and Sam Tovey after they stepped up to fill the absence of Falcons A-team scrum-half James Elliot.
“I thought Joe [Pickering] was superb,” said a proud Fearn.
“Him and Sam when he came on had some big boots to fill with James unavailable because he’s played pretty much a full 80 minutes every game this season.
“Fair play to Joe, he’s waited about a year and half to get that nine shirt and he did fantastically well.
“He’s a tough lad who fights for everything and he’s a proper grafter.
“He did himself proud and so did Sam when he came on.”
The win means that Northumbria sit 6th in the BUCS Super Rugby heading into the new year with an adamant Fearn challenging his side to continue their strong run of form when the season picks up again in January.
“We’ve got some tough games after Christmas but we’ve got some time now to touch up on a few areas so we can come back after the break and really push on,” said Fearn.
“I think the break’s come at a good time for us now – we can now get a few of the lads back fit.
“We’re sitting comfortably in sixth at the minute and we’ve already played a lot of the big sides in this league.
“We can enjoy our Christmas on the back of two impressive wins and are looking forward to the second half of the season.”