THE long trip to North Newcastle was singularly unrewarding for the Ilkley team and the supporters who had made the journey, as they fell to a confidence-knocking 50-17 defeat.

It was the first match that the visitors had played on a 4G surface this season, and it was Ilkley that came out of the blocks the quickest.

A promising start saw some free-flowing rugby and Charlie Morgan soon put Ilkley in front with a penalty goal. 3-0.

Regrettably that was as near as a victory got in this disappointing display for the visitors, as frailties at scrum time and failure to execute the basics didn’t help their cause.

Blaydon responded with a try scored after a high tackle penalty on Ilkley’s 22. They chose the scrum to win another penalty. Taken quickly, they put winger Kev Slow in for an unconverted try in the corner to make it 5-3 in their favour.

This pretty much set the tone for the match.

A driven and converted try from prop Darren Fearn made it 12-3.

Jack Appleton then added another from deep and the extras were added to increase the scoreline to 19-3 with just 15 minutes on the clock.

There was a brief interval when the Dalesmen showed their potential.

Charlie Head benefitted from a turnover on Blaydon’s 22 and the quick thinking of Jack Maplesden from a penalty. Head crashed over for a converted try to reduce the deficit to 19-10.

Will Marlow showed a great turn of speed and skill as he took a long pass and chipped the last defender to gather and score. Morgan converted to bring Ilkley within two points of their hosts.

They almost scored again after a great move via Ben Magee, Keiran Wilyman and Floris van Oekel but a penalty was coughed up.

With ten minutes to the interval Ilkley really needed to score again or at least prevent Blaydon stealing a march. Alex Powell went close, but the opportunity was frustrated by yet another penalty.

Blaydon cleared to half way. The one lineout they lost all game was miscued but they made up for it, winning a penalty from an Ilkley scrum. That gave the hosts a lineout on Ilkley’s 22 and their excellent backs were looking dangerous once again.

A yellow card for obstruction shown to Will Addyman didn’t help and from the resulting lineout Appleton bagged his brace in the corner. 24-17.

A one score game at half time was about as good as the Dalesmen deserved.

Van Oekel made way for Peter Erskine whilst Addyman served his time.

The rest of the game was eminently forgettable.

Blaydon were pumped at the Crow’s nest.

They ran in four more tries aided and abetted by the generosity of Ilkley’s propensity to get the wrong side of referee Mr Simon Williams.

Dan Marshall made it 29-17 with a try in the corner after Ilkley had conceded a free kick.

Josh Pinder and Archie Elgood were called into action, but in truth there was little they could do stop the onslaught.

Kev Slow added another after a driven lineout from a penalty conceded on halfway. 36-17.

Try as they did, Ilkley were turning possession over with knock-ons, loose passes and those seemingly inevitable penalties.

Further tries from Appleton and replacement Atticus Mikles, both converted took Blaydon to the half century and the Dalesmen to their heaviest defeat for some time, with the final score ending at 50-17.

Some soul searching is urgently required ahead of this week’s home fixture against Cleckheaton who looked to have turned a poor start to the season. Kick-off is 2.15pm.