Hunslet 32 London Skolars 12: Skolars beaten by Hunslet in Kingstone Press League One Shield final
- Credit: Archant
Kingstone Press League One Shield final: Hunslet 32 London Skolars 12
London Skolars missed out on what would have been their first trophy since joining the professional leagues 14 years ago after losing 32-12 at Hunslet in the Kingstone Press League One Shield final.
The home side took the lead early on after Liam Mackay perfectly timed his run onto a Joel Gibson kick into the in-goal area.
Skolars hit back, though, and a Smokie Junor led to a good position, from which Lamont Bryan pushed his way through six defenders to the tryline, with Jy-Mel Coleman converting.
After a period of sustained pressure near the London line, Hunslet scored again when, from 30 metres out, George Flanagan sprinted from dummy half to score under the posts.
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Skolars tried to fight back when the hosts could not stop Coleman’s long kick-off from bouncing over the dead-ball line, but again they were unable to keep possession in that set.
The next chance London had saw Lameck Juma run wide before passing blind inside to the waiting Michael Brown, who raced over to score, with Coleman converting to level the scores at 12-12.
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With half-time approaching, it took a good tackle by Brown to stop former Skolars star Mufaro Mvududu from scoring on the right.
However, Hunslet worked the ball in the next two tackles before James Duckworth, another London old boy, touched down in the corner, with the extras added as the hosts led 18-12 at the break.
Shortly after the restart, Skolars fell further behind when Mackay crossed the whitewash after another break from Mvududu.
Joe Sanderson extended Hunslet’s lead with a penalty from close range and kicked another from the centre spot two minutes later.
There was a faint hope of a London comeback when Lewis Reed was sin-binned for a late tackle with 12 minutes remaining.
After Juma was forced into touch, though, Skolars had to try to force passes and an error saw Duckworth score his second try of the day.
That score meant Hunslet were able to start their celebrations, leaving Skolars to reflect on what might have been.
London will now take the next few weeks off before returning to pre-season training ahead of their first friendly against Wigan Warriors on January 19.