Skolars defeated by promotion hopefuls Thunder

The latest news from the local rugby league scene (pic: Mike Egerton/PA)

The latest news from the local rugby league scene (pic: Mike Egerton/PA) - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Betfred League One: London Skolars 12 Newcastle Thunder 48

London Skolars suffered their first defeat of the Betfred League One season as they went down 48-12 at home to Newcastle Thunder.

Newcastle grabbed the opening score of the game when Liam Finn’s kick to the corner was collected by Mo Agoro, who applied the finish.

However, a kick from James Barran forced a goal line drop out for London and James Meadows cut past the defence to score under the posts.

The low kick at the end of the next set saw Thunder just get to the ball, but Skolars captain Iliess Macani was alert and able to steal.

London then moved the ball to the right with Meadows’ pass finding Mike Greenhalgh who powered over from ten metres out with Neil Thorman adding his second conversion.

There were a few punches thrown in an off-the-ball incident, which saw Newcastle’s Sam Luckley and Skolars’ Lamont Bryan both sent to the sin-bin.

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Thunder started to control the game just before half-time when Keal Carlile went over from close range after Macani was been penalised for obstruction.

Newcastle moved into the lead soon after the restart when Carlile’s short pass saw Jack Aldous burst through the defence.

Thunder then went further ahead when Max Jowitt finished off a Joe Arundel break down the left with Finn kicking the conversion from the sideline into a strong wind.

That wind helped London regain possession from the kick-off, with the ball crossing the 10-metre line in the air before being blown back into their hands.

Lameck Juma made break down the left, but his pass to Sam Grant went to ground.

Newcastle attacked again with Carlile opening up a gap for Taulapapa to touchdown. This time, Richard Wilkinson’s short restart kick was blown directly into touch.

The resulting penalty for Thunder saw them pressurise the defence again and another short pass from Carlile saw Luckley touchdown.

Aaron Olett scored when Skolars failed to get to a grubber kick and Arundel raced through a gap to score soon afterward, before Jowitt blazed down the right for his second try off the game.