Hunslet Hawks put up a better performance than the scoreline suggests in a 46-0 home defeat by Salford Red Devils on Saturday.
Hawks defended strongly throughout, on a gluepot of a pitch, but were caught out by the Super League outfit’s superior finishing power.
Though they had spells of pressure, Hunslet only came close to scoring once when Lewis Reed got over the line mid-way through the first half, but the touchdown was ruled out for a ball-steal.
Salford led 24-0 at the break through tries by Scott Taylor, Mason Caton-Brown, Rangi Chase and Greg Johnson, all converted by Chase.
Theo Fages, who was Salford’s most impressive player, crossed at the start of the second period, but Hawks then matched the visitors until the final five minutes, when the Red Devils added touchdowns through Chase, Caton-Brown and Niall Evalds. Chase missed just one of his conversion attempts.
Brad Brennan, who put in a huge tackle on Salford’s Harrison Hansen, looked strong for Hawks, alongside Robbie Ward, Danny Grimshaw and Brooke Broughton.
Hawks’ substitute hooker Matthew Tebb was stretchered off in the first half, but said to be “okay” after the game.
Hunslet are back in action on Sunday, away to Championship rivals Doncaster (3pm).