Two late tries saw Wakefield Trinity Reserves snatch victory away from the clutches of Hull FC Reserves at the Be Well Support Stadium on Friday night.
The Black & Whites’ Reserves were on course for a surprise victory against a Wakefield outfit that included nine first-team players, having lead 22-10 heading into the final ten minutes of the game.
But late tries from Lewis Murphy, Harry Bowes and Max Jowitt saw Trinity complete an impressive comeback, despite a gallant effort from Hull’s youngsters.
Wakefield’s experience was clear to see in the opening ten minutes, winning the majority of the rucks and dominating the territorial battle.
But for all of their dominance and time camped on Hull’s try line, the hosts had no points to show for it, all thanks to some staunch defence from the Black & Whites.
Michael Shenton’s side then punished Trinity at the other end of the field, getting over the whitewash with just their first goodball set of the match. On the thirteen-minute mark, Alex Gibson simply had to fall over the try line to score on the crash play, giving Hull a surprise 6-0 lead.
FC almost doubled their lead after a lovely combination between Callum Rutland and Davy Litten, but Murphy came storming out of the defensive line to force an error from the Hull fullback.
Hull conceded a penalty in the set following the turnover, inviting pressure back on their own try line, and that was the opening Wakefield needed to get their first points of the evening when Bowes scooted over from dummy half.
It would have been easy to forgive the visitors for falling away at that stage. But if anything, Hull stood tall in the face of adversity and regained the lead when Marcus Walker picked up a loose ball and cantered through a gaping hole in the broken defensive line.
There was another chance for Hull before half-time when a couple of offloads helped put Harvey Barron into the clear down the right wing, but Yorkshire Academy halfback Robbie Butterworth intervened with a superb cover tackle.
HALF-TIME: Trinity 6-12 Hull
Wakefield emerged from the changing rooms much the dominant side at the start of the second half and a looping pass out wide to Kyle Evans gave the winger a walk in at the right corner just six minutes after the restart.
Still, Hull were not going anywhere without a fight. After more defensive resilience, Shenton’s side reaped the rewards at the other end of the field. Zach Jebson almost broke through with a hard line, but he managed to get a quick play-the-ball away and a couple of plays later Manoa Wacokecoke crashed over to the left side of the sticks.
Hookem’s missed conversion attempt kept Hull’s winning margin at just six points, but FC stunned Wakefield with a fourth try of the evening straight from the restart.
Nick Staveley made a barnstorming break up to halfway, setting the field nicely for the visitors. A few plays into the set, Cameron Scott found himself in space on the right side of the field and he darted towards the posts to double FC’s advantage to score in his first outing since suffering a foot injury back in February.
With ten minutes remaining, Trinity pulled themselves right back into the contest when Murphy ran onto Jowitt’s drop off pass and powered over from close range.
As Hull looked set to hold onto the two competition points, Wakefield’s late pressure yielded their fourth try of the game, Bowes scampering over from dummy half once again. Jowitt’s conversion brought the scores level with less than a minute on the clock.
A matter of seconds remained following the restart but that was still enough time for the hosts to snatch the result away from the Black & Whites when Tinirau Arona slipped a pass to Jowitt on the inside. The Wakefield fullback had just enough pace to get away from Litten and dot the ball down on the hooter.
FULL-TIME: Trinity 26-22 Hull
Squads & Scorers
Hull: Litten, Barron, Scott, Walker, Martin, Rutland, Hookem, Laidlaw, Johnstone, Bowden, Burrell, Jebson, Gibson
Hull Interchanges: Balmforth, Gardiner, Staveley, Wacokecoke
Hull Tries: Gibson, Walker, Wacokecoke, Scott
Hull Goals: Hookem (3/4)
Trinity: Jowitt, Evans, Croft, Tupou, Murphy, Walker, Butterworth, Butler, Bowes, Arona, O’Donovan, Mearns, Battye
Trinity Interchanges: Camplin, Farrar, Haywood-Scriven, Roberts
Trinity Tries: Bowes (2), Evans, Murphy, Jowitt
Trinity Goals: Jowitt (3/5)