Bakewell Mannerians delivered one of their best performances of the season against Loughborough in Midlands Division Two East (North).
Loughborough were the more aggressive and dominant in the early exchanges, as Bakewell suffered a setback when Harry Kidd sustained a dislocated shoulder.
Will Brocklehurst provided a stream of line out possession and the robust front row of Henry Lofthouse, Jimmy O’Neill and Peter Carr ensured a solid scrum platform.
Ethan Bagshawe and Ed Hutchinson linked well at half back, and Henry Bagshawe produced an exceptional display in midfield.
A well-worked set move from a scrum saw Tom Crapper licking his lips as would-be tacklers were batted aside and he slid in under the posts to give Zac Dann an easy conversion. Ben Hopkinson crashed over after good work by Rob Middlemiss, who played his way out of defence and enabled the Bagshawes to power forward before the maul tied up defenders.
Ben Rylands and Carr were vying for the accolade of maziest runner and when skipper Jack Duncan scampered in for a fine try, Dann added the extras. New signing Alex Drage tore up the wing before he found Hopkinson at his shoulder for his second of the day.
A couple of close range scrums saw the Bakewell pack held up just short, but at the third attempt the drive was too powerful for Loughborough and Hopkinson’s hat-trick score was the archetypal pushover try. Dann’s conversion took his side to 31 points, and a well-earned bonus point victory was secured.
Bakewell: Duncan; Crapper, Dann, Bagshawe, Middlemiss (Drage); Hutchinson (Middlemiss), Bagshawe; Lofthouse, O’Neill (Pearce), Rylands, Kidd (Taylor), Gregory, Brocklehurst, Hopkinson.