Bideford faded to a 24-13 Western Counties defeat against Newton Abbot in the final 15 minutes of an entertaining game.
In difficult conditions for both sides, Bideford took the lead through a Chris Snell try that Mark Lee converted. Newton Abbot got a try back just before the break to trail 7-5 going into the second period.
Lee kicked two penalties to put Bideford 13-5 up midway through the second half, but Newton hit back with a converted try to go 14-3 up with 15 minutes to go
In a tense finish Bideford pressed hard, but Newton Abbot’s defence kept them at bay. Two late tries ensured Newton Abbot went home with a bonus-point win.
Bradley Goaman, the Bideford team manager, said it was a meeting between evenly matched sides settled by small margins.
“In the second half, we had the advantage of the wind in our favour, but did not kick on and dominate field position,” said Goaman.
“Credit to Newton Abbot, who are a decent side and defended very well. Our players had a lot of energy and we were disappointed we lost the game. A few errors and penalties cost us.
“The players they gave it their all. Mark Lee, Billy Teape and Rob Elliott caught the eye and deserve a lot of credit for their no-nonsense tackling.”
Oscar Carter Burns was the sponsor’s man of the match.