Saturday the 10th of May 2014 will be a day many Northwood supporters will fondly remember as the Knights claimed their first victory over Hilton College in 23 years, continuing on their unbeaten home record this season.
From the kick off both sides were on the attack, with Northwood initially struggling to put phases together due to strong Hilton defense. Finally working their way into the left hand corner they reverted to the pick and go that they do so well and within seconds a nod by the assistant referee to the referee confirmed a try had been scored by Northwood burly number 7, Calvin Silson.
Hilton then replied with a try of their own after good work from their forwards allowed their fullback to coast over for a try in the corner. With Northwood doing the basics well up front, fly-half David Weersma put his boot to good use to pin Hilton back into their own half, suffocating any hopes of getting back into the Northwood half. Due to the heavy pressure on Hilton by Northwood working territory well, they were awarded two kickable penalties which they took full advantage of through the reliable boot of Sasasa Makhanya.
This saw the Knights going into the break with their heads up and leading 11 points to 7.
The 2nd half started with renewed Hilton pressure but the Knights defense largely neutralized the attacking threat . The Northwood forwards started to gain dominance and this lead towards a well worked try which was converted to leave Nothwood 18 – 7 up.
As soon as Hilton got their hands back on the ball and started looking dangerous out wide, all hopes were cut short as, winger Jabu Mabida, worked a 50m run from an intercept (what seemed like De-javu of the Jeppe fixture) placed under the poles for an easily converted try within minutes of the previous one.
Northwood took full advantage of the lead and with great hands through the backs saw David Weersma put Sasasa Makhanya through a beautiful gap, and with Phiko Sobahle on hand to support he pulled off a miraculous gather from the pass to do what comes so naturally to him by finishing under the posts. With the score 32-7 to Northwood, Hilton can be proud of their efforts for the rest of the game which led to them getting an unconverted try towards the end of the match. The confidence in the Northwood camp can only be used to the Knights advantage as they have 4 home games in a row still to come.
Final score 32-14 to Northwood.
Photos courtesy of Michael Symington, Northwood Press Club