A young Lincoln 1st XV were knocked out of the first round of the RFU Intermediate Cup after a narrow 28-21 defeat at Pinley.
Louie Cooke, Owen Mitchinson, Tom Brookes, Ben Jones and Jose Maria Idarreta all made impressive first team debuts for a much-changed Lincoln side.
Tries from wingers Mark Brittain and Steffan Thompson, which were both converted by Harry Marks, gave Pinley a 14-0 lead.
Lincoln reduced the deficit when a good move through the hands of the backs saw Matt Walker stopped just short, before he offloaded to set up a try for captain Lewis Wilson. Cooke added the extras.
Pinley full-back Steve Hodson crashed over for a try to give the hosts a 21-7 half-time lead after a great break by Marks, who slotted over the conversion.
The hosts increased their lead through captain Sam Nicholls’ try in the second half, which Marks converted.
Lincoln’s Jim Calveley and Pinley’s Hodson were sent to the sin bin as both sides were reduced to 14 men.
Two tries in 10 minutes saw Lincoln move to within seven points of their opponents. Walker made a great break before offloading to set up a try for Laurence Few, who was playing out of position at hooker. Cooke added the extras.
Cooke broke through a tackle to run 30 metres for his first try for the 1st XV soon after, which he also converted to leave the cup tie in the balance.
Lincoln tried to push for a fourth try, but Ben Sykes was tackled just short and Aiden Mason was held up over the line as Pinley clung on for victory.
After the match captain Wilson said: “It was good to give a lot of the younger players some game time and they really stepped up in a team that was very different from the week before. It shows we have depth in positions and brings in a healthy competition for places.”
Edan Kelly scored four tries in a special match for his dad Brian’s 50th birthday as Lincoln’s 3rd XV lost against his former club Leeds Corinthians.
Lincoln Ladies began their league campaign in the Women’s NC 2 North (East) with a 48-5 defeat at Driffield on Sunday.
Lynne Brooker-Brown scored the only try for Lincoln, who gave a debut to Jo Thomas. Thomas was playing in her first game for the club after picking up a ball for the first time just eight weeks ago.
After the match Lincoln Ladies head coach Brian Kelly said: “Once again the girls’ effort is without question and the defence prevented a potentially much higher score line.”
Lincoln’s Colts are now spilt into two teams – Reds and Greens. The Reds beat Sleaford 38-7 thanks to tries from Ben Manderfield, Eren Hamilton, Xavier Favry-Wallace, Ben Crowe, Harry Whittaker and Jack Randall, with the latter adding four conversions.
The Greens beat Ashfield 46-5 with Ben Wootton and Ollie Keen each scoring two tries. Charlie Porter-Robinson, Henry Everett, Jake Wright and Matt Penny also scored tries, with Lloyd Buck adding three conversions.
Lincoln’s 1st XV face their first league match of the season with the visit of Long Eaton on Saturday. Lincoln’s Imps XV begin their season with the visit of Nottingham Moderns. Lincoln’s 3rd XV will travel to play Paviors.
Elsewhere in the county, Scunthorpe began life in National Two (North) with a battling 52-32 home defeat against Fylde.
Captain Tom Foster, Ollie Collie, Ben Hyde and Paul Cook scored Scunthorpe’s tries, with the latter added three conversions and two penalties. The match also saw former Lincoln player Will Scammell make his league debut for Scunthorpe.
In Midlands Four East (North), Gainsborough began their season in style with a 44-14 victory at Nottinghamians. Ben Watson grabbed two tries for Gainsborough, with Ryan Woods, Brad Beresford, Jonny Clayton, Tom Mell and Rikki Harrison each scoring one. Robbie Goodyear added three conversions and a penalty.
In the same division, Boston won 56-10 at Tupton in a league and RFU Junior Vase double header. Rowan Mason and Jaron Cowern crossed for two tries apiece, with Jamie Jenkins, Harry Woods, Josh Cook, Dan Piggo and Paul Beard each scoring one. Mason kicked three conversions and Tom Hobbs added a conversion and a penalty.
North Hykeham captain Ross O’Loughlin was among the try scorers in a 24-24 draw at Meden Vale.
Tommy Jarvis and Gareth Alder-Woolf each scored a try and Rob Booth added three conversions and a penalty.
Cleethorpes beat Skegness 54-5 in a league and cup double header.
Phill Stark and Matty Searle both grabbed two tries and Alex Nabais, Oli Wardman, Sam Pearson and Isacc Machon each scored one. Wardman added seven conversions. Skegness’ try was scored by Lucas Gartshore.
Sleaford were narrowly beaten 36-27 at Chesterfield Panthers. Sam Harris, Adam Loveday, Curtis Key and James Hough scored Sleaford’s tries, with Wayne Harley adding two conversions and a penalty.
Stamford won 20-17 against Kesteven in a friendly on Thursday night. Oli Johnson, Tom Wire, Ryan Jones and Harry Ayton scored Stamford’s tries.
James Goodrich, Will Pert and Ben Whinney scored tries for Kesteven with the latter adding one conversion.
In the Women’s NC 2 North (East), Amanda Hunt scored a try in her first ever game of rugby as Sleaford Ladies claimed a 5-0 home victory over Kesteven Ladies.
Karolina Kacirkova scored Boston Ladies’ only try in their 17-5 defeat away against Doncaster Ladies. Scunthorpe Ladies suffered a 57-24 home defeat against Hull Ionian Ladies.
Grimsby Ladies played an 8s friendly away against Ossett, which they won 49-27. Aleksandra Jakabus and Katie Pye were among the Grimsby try scorers, with the latter also adding seven conversions.