Hull FC Reserves ran in a total of fifteen tries in a resounding 76-6 victory over Newcastle Thunder Reserves at the University of Hull this afternoon.
The Black & Whites had established a comprehensive 36-0 lead at the break, scoring seven tries, all of which scored by different players.
A ruthless spell at the start of the second half extinguished any remaining Newcastle spirit, with Zach Jebson crossing for a hat-trick and Davy Litten, Marcus Walker, Jermarie Chatham and Alfie Oldridge each grabbing braces.
After a complete, set-for-set first ten minutes, Hull began to turn the screw when they forced the first drop-out of the afternoon. From the resulting set, Jacob Hookem threw a dummy and fooled the Newcastle defenders to score the first try of what turned out to be a very busy day.
Straight from the kick-off, the Black & Whites marched up the field and scored again after Hookem fired a cutout ball to Chatham, who dumped the ball back on the inside to Litten, giving the fullback a walk in.
Again, Hull flexed their muscle by scoring straight from the kick-off. This time, Litten made a quicksilver break down the left edge, but after being hacked down from behind, the Airlie Birds shipped the ball to the right edge and Jebson managed to wrestle the ball to the ground after forcing his way through some purple traffic.
Thunder were desperate to wrestle back the momentum to prevent the game running away from them, but they could only hold out for another six minutes before their defence was breached again. Callum Rutland looped a pass out wide to Oldridge to score his first of the afternoon, coming just six days after his four-try haul on his Academy debut.
Rutland was at the heart of the action again when his towering kick was claimed by Litten, who had Chatham in support to offload to, sending the Welshman in for Hull’s fifth try.
Two more tries came before half-time as Walker snaked out an arm to get over the whitewash before Rutland’s grubber kick was latched onto by Junior Mafi underneath the sticks.
HALF-TIME: Hull 36-0 Thunder
After the interval, Michael Shenton’s Reserves were in no mood to let Newcastle enjoy a strong start to the second half and Sam Richards’ scoot from dummy half following an Alex Gibson break made sure that the visitors’ spirit was further dampened early on.
A bit of set piece practice yielded another try for the Black & Whites as Hookem launched a spectacular looping pass out wide to Chatham off the back of a scrum for the Welsh winger to score his second try.
Rutland had been involved in a number of big moments throughout the game and he had another major contribution to add to his match report when a 40/20 put Hull in a commanding position to get over the whitewash for a tenth time. This time, it was Litten’s turn to cross for a brace, demonstrating some neat footwork to squeeze through the Newcastle try line.
Thunder kicked out on the full from the restart and the Black & Whites were still in a ruthless mood, Rutland sliding in a grubber kick and Jebson diving on top of the loose ball.
Moments later, Leon Stewart’s break almost put Litten away for his hat-trick, but the fullback was tackled from behind for the second time in the game as it looked as he was about to score. But Hookem intervened quickly from dummy half and supplied the pass to Walker, who was able to beat his opponent in a one-on-one and ground the ball.
Jebson won the race of those on a brace to claim a hat-trick. It was all thanks to some lovely ball-handling skills from his halfback Rutland, who was continuing to impress in the sun.
For the second time in the second-half, Shenton’s men crossed the try line off the back of a scrum. The ball went along the line thanks to some neat passing from Litten and Masike, enabling Oldridge to dive in at the corner in acrobatic fashion.
The only blemish on a near-perfect afternoon for FC was Tyler Hepple’s try from dummy half with less than ten minutes remaining, with Thunder being able to score after Hull conceded back-to-back penalties.
But it was the Black & Whites who had the final say and it was Hookem who claimed another assist. He shaped up a cutout pass to the left wing, but put the brakes on and flicked the ball back on the inside to the supporting Gibson to score Hull’s fifteenth try of the game.
FULL-TIME: Hull 76-6 Thunder
Squads & Scorers
Hull: Litten, Oldridge, Masike, Walker, Chatham, Rutland, Hookem, Petrie, Gibson, Burrell, Stewart, Jebson, Gardiner
Hull Interchanges: Dulson, Gilbey, Mafi, Richards
Hull Tries: Hookem, Litten (2), Jebson (3), Oldridge (2), Chatham (2), Walker (2), Mafi, Richards, Gibson
Hull Goals: Hookem (1/4), Rutland (7/9)
Thunder: Flanagan, Arnold, White, Jardine, Snowden, Rendles, Shaw, Anderson, Hepple, Moran, Skelton, Dalton, Lowery
Thunder Interchanges: Bradley, Breeze, Lintin, Murtagh
Thunder Tries: Hepple
Thunder Goals: Shaw (1/1)