Newton Stewart took advantage of Gordonians postponement to go top of National Division 3 after a 31-7 win over Carrick.
Rivalry between these two sides is always fierce, and the games are intense as a result.
Newton Stewart snatched an early try when Reds winger Jamie Muir received the ball in space near the try line before running straight through the home defence, overcoming the covering full-back with a superb hand-off, Centre Fraser Morton added the two to give the Reds a 7-0 lead.
With 25 minutes played a scrum was set just 10 metres out from the Carrick try line. Back row James Wallace burst off the back of the scrum and put a pass into winger Robert Service who ran on into the far corner to score. Morton converted for 0-14.
After a Service snuffed out a Carrick counter their openside flanker was shown a red card moments later for dangerous play. When the resultant penalty led to a rolling maul, it was Ronan McDonald who was tasked with guiding the ball over the line, and he fell down upon it to score Newton Stewart’s third try of the game to go into the break 0-19 ahead.
The second half started with some fancy footwork from David Gaw as he danced through the Carrick defence before throwing the ball wide. Service collected it and backed himself once more, running in his second try for Fraser Morton to convert.
Some loose defence from the Reds allowed Carrick a scoring opportunity next, with their scrum-half capitalising to narrow the score to 7-26.
The referee intervened with increasing regularity as the game went on and showed yellow cards to both centre Liam Brawls and flanker Russell Gaw.
Fourteen Carrick men played thirteen Newton Stewart men in the dying minutes, however the Reds produced a try despite the deficit. Robert Service collected a loose ball neatly on the line to score his hat-trick of tries and close out the game at 7-31.