Selkirk 2nds 16, Melrose 2nds 16
Melrose 2nds stage late rally to deny Selkirk
AHEAD 16-3 going into the final quarter of the
match, it looked as though Selkirk 2nds were on course for a revenge victory in Saturday's Roadhead Farm Feeds
Border Championship match against Melrose 2nds at Philiphaugh on Saturday.
The visitors had other ideas, however, and a try and conversion in the dying minutes of the match allowed Melrose to come away with a share of the points.
With Selkirk's young back row trio of Andrew Millar, Scott Rodgerson and Callum Johnston giving an inspired lead both in defence and attack, the home team built up a 9-3 interval lead thanks to three well-struck penalties from stand-off Guy Blair to one by Steve Beattie.
After the break Selkirk's players continued where they had left off in the first half, pinning Melrose back in their own 22 for long periods.
A penalty was kicked to the corner by Blair, and from the resulting line-out drive Jimmy Stephens was able to smuggle the ball over the line for a try - his second of the season. Blair's conversion kick flew over, much to the delight of his father Ian, who was Selkirk's touch-judge for the afternoon.
The home side's discipline then began to slip, allowing Beattie to kick two more penalties. During this period Marcus Barnett and a Melrose player both received yellow cards from referee Austin Ramage.
With injury time looming the visitors drew level by replicating Selkirk's try from driven line-out ball, and Beattie's conversion set the seal on Melrose's spirited comeback.
SELKIRK - J. Ross, T. Walling, M. Jaffray, N. Brown, J. Lyall, G. Blair, F. Jack, J. Stephens, E. Robbie, R. Price, K. Connor, M. Rodgerson, A. Millar, S. Rodgerson, C. Johnston. Replacements - J. Duncan, S. Morrow, G. Hancock, G. MacDougall, M. Barnett.
Referee - A. Ramage (Gala YM).
Jimmy Stephens - try gave Selkirk boost.