DESPITE picking up two yellow cards, Tynedale claimed their second successive maximum points win on Saturday at a cold and rainy Preston.

The five points lifted them to seventh place in National League Division Two North, and hopefully putting paid to fears of a slump into the murky waters of the relegation dogfight.

Having accounted for rock bottom Scunthorpe the previous week, Tynedale had too much to offer for the Hoppers, lying second bottom and also looking to be in deep trouble.

The bitterly cold crossfield wind made conditions difficult for the two sides, and a string of penalties against both teams put sustained attacking play out of the question.

As ever, Tynedale defended well when called upon, and the scrummage was solid, although the line-out still left much to be desired.

Dan Lowdon was again preferred to David Batey at hooker in the starting XV but the crowd favourite’s day lasted only 24 minutes, before he had to go off with a thigh injury

He was replaced by Batey, but the replacement’s afternoon was also interrupted, when he picked up Tynedale’s first yellow card on 35 minutes.

Centre Will Miller was another first half casualty, making way for Jonny Burden.on 34 minutes.

Tynedale were quickly into their stride and went ahead after five minutes, when steady pressure saw the Grasshoppers run out of defenders allowing fly half Jake Rodgers to touch down for a try he converted himself.

The Grasshoppers clawed their way back into the game on 17 minutes when a solid driving maul brought a score for hooker Oliver Trippier, and the conversion by fly half Will Davidson restored parity.

With Batey in the sin bin, it seemed the score would remain at 7-7 at half time, until some poor tackling by the Hoppers defence allowed prop Ben Haigh to force his way over for a well taken try improved by Rodgers with the last kick of the half.

Tynedale extended their lead on 57 minutes, when rampaging work by the forwards opened up the gap for skipper Matty Outson to exploit from scrum half, the conversion by Rodgers extending the advantage to 21-7.

The four try bonus point was in the bag three minutes later in spectacular style, as Tynedale launched an attack from their own try line which scorched the length of the field, and ended with speed machine Guy Pike touching down for an unconverted try.

Prop Michael Hughes became Tynedale’s second player in the sin bin on 69 minutes, but he soon had company on the naughty step, as Hoppers winger Jordan Dorrington suffered a similar fate four minutes later.

Rodgers took the score to 29-7 with a penalty on 74 minutes, but the Hoppers had the last word when lock Ally Murray went over under the sticks from the last play of the game, full back Nick Gregson converting,

Tynedale return to Corbridge on Saturday for the visit of nearest neighbours Wharfedale, who lie three places and five points behind Tynedale in the league.

The away fixture in October ended in a 27-27 draw, so Tynedale will be keen to improve on that score line.

The game at Tynedale Park, Corbridge, will kick off at 2pm. It will be the last home game until March 7, when Stourbridge will be the visitors.