Ionians and Tigers secure safety but Harrogate suffer relegation

Hull Ionians' Callum Irvine, left.
Hull Ionians' Callum Irvine, left.
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Hull Ionians secured their National One status for next season after a 41-26 victory at Darlington Mowden Park on the final day of the season.

Ionians trailed 19-13 at the break, Edward Falkingham scoring their try with Isaac Green adding the conversion and two penalties. Ally Forth went over to put Ionians 20-19 up after the restart, and after the hosts saw a player sent to the sin-bin, the visitors pressed home the advantage.

Two tries in quick succession for Callum Irvine, both converted by Green, secured the bonus point and put survival within touching distance at 34-19

Simon Uzokwe put the pressure on with his second try for Mowden Park, but Andy Humberstone’s late try sealed the win.

It was a three-way fight for survival between Harrogate, Sheffield Tigers and Scunthorpe in National Two North, and it was Tigers who stayed up after a 36-23 victory at Luctonians.

Winger Chris Pond scored the opening try but Tigers trailed 17-10 at the break.

Louis Silver stretched the gap to 10 points but Tigers full-back Pete Swatkins went over, before scrum-half Ryan Holmes scored, both converted by Mark Ireland.

A drop goal from Tom Jones made it a one-point game, but Jamie Broadley went over for the bonus-point try, before Lee Monks crossed.

Harrogate went down despite leading 17-5 at the break at Hinckley. A try 90 seconds from time condemned them to a 32-31 defeat. Harrogate claimed the Yorkshire Cup in midweek after Tigers conceded the match.

Wharfedale came back from 17 and 15-point deficits to secure a 41-34 win at relegated Preston Grasshoppers to finish 10th.

Sale secured a home play-off tie in National Two North after running in seven tries in their 44-14 defeat of Otley, who finish one place below Wharfedale.

Sheffield will play in National Two North next time after clinching promotion with a 32-31 victory in their play-off at Rossendale.

West Leeds made it back-to-back promotions after coming away with a 19-14 victory at South Shields Westoe in their play-off.

England's Ben T'eo. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA

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