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Derby day delight makes it six of the best for Boro; RUGBY UNION.

Byline: Jonathon Taylor Sports writer

MIDDLESBROUGH snatched the bragging rights on Teesside after extending their winning run to six matches with a victory over Stockton.

The Acklam Park outfit have been in irresistible form since their "level transfer" from Yorkshire One, and a home clash with local rivals Stockton looked far from a formality.

But Ian Heslehurst's side made it six wins on the spin in Durham and North One with a 36-16 win to keep the pressure on leaders Durham City, who also have maximum points from their early games.

Boro started off making lots of unforced errors and it wasn't too surprising when Stockton took the lead with a penalty inside five minutes.

However, the hosts came roaring back with Rhys Kilbride offloading to Rob Bellerby, who ran through unopposed for the opening try.

Kilbride scored the second try shortly after, with Sam Gaudie adding the extras.

The third try came on the halfhour mark as Conner Foley skipped through a hole in the defence, but Stockton kept the scoreboard ticking over with another penalty of their own.

Boro's bonus point came on 50 minutes as Kilbride got the better of his man again to cross the line, and there was still time for Bellerby to add his second before Richie Lonsdale got in on the act. A dogged display by Stockton was rewarded by a Mark Conway try late on, which was converted by Dan Phinn.

In the same division, Acklam pulled off an impressive 51-24 win at Darlington to clinch their first away victory of the season.

The hosts did score the opening try on five minutes, but that sparked Acklam into life with James Ffitch and 18-year-old Jake Murray both scoring.

Darlington came roaring back with two tries either side of the break, but Acklam clicked into gear shortly afterwards with Andrew Dunn, Karl Murray, Bradley Gator and Kris Hutchin getting their names onto the scoreboard.

In National Three North, Billingham earned their first home league win of the campaign after a sensational 41-35 victory over Sheffield, with tries galore at Greenwood Road.

It was the same scenario for Guisborough in North One East, edging out Morpeth 14-9 to secure their first league victory at Belmangate in 2015/16.

In Durham and North Two, Redcar maintained their strong early-season surge by beating Houghton 44-13 at Mackinlay Park.

Houghton were first to score with a penalty after only five minutes and it took another 20 minutes before Redcar struck back when Danny Addison crossed for an unconverted try.

Player-coach Ben Durrans touched down before the break to put Redcar in charge, before two Ashton penalties left it 15-3 at the break.

Redcar continued to control the game in the second half despite some handling errors, and were eventually rewarded with further tries from Durrans, Mark Harrison, Andy Wills and man-of-the-match Addison.

In Durham and North Three, Yarm made it four wins in a row beating Hartlepool BBOB 34-24 on home soil - maintaining their early-season promise.


Sam Gaudie reaches for the ball during Middlesbrough's match against Stockton at Acklam Park at the weekend 101015RUGBY_11 KATIE LUNN

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:Oct 13, 2015
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