Hull climbed to third in the National 2 North table after recording an impressive 38-19 victory at Blaydon. The visitors started the game strongly and as soon as they opened the scoring, they controlled the game until the final whistle. And the unlikely hero was prop Mike Jobling who helped himself to a first half hat-trick.
Blaydon kicked off but from that moment on, they were immediately put under pressure. Opting to kick for touch from an early penalty sent a message to Blaydon that Hull were intent on winning to keep the pressure on the leaders at the top of the table.
An efficient catch and drive saw the visitors open the scoring through Jobling near the touchline with four minutes on the clock. Seeing the move work so well first time around, the visitors called up the same play with Jobling again the man crossing the whitewash. Simon Humberstone’s conversion gave Hull a 12-0 advantage.
It looked like being a long afternoon for the home side, but they did get themselves on the scoreboard next after an error from the restart. Full-back Nathan Bailey scored a converted try under the posts to reduce the arrears to five points.
Hull stuck with the now unstoppable lineout catch and drive and remarkably, Jobling emerged with the ball to complete a sensational hat-trick within the first 25 minutes. Humberstone was off target with the conversion, but Hull led 17-7.
Hull’s power in the scrum has been dominant all season long and it was no surprise that Blaydon struggled to stop them. On the stroke of half-time, Blaydon’s cause was helped when the visitors were reduced to 14 men when Latu Makaafi was shown a red card for a high tackle.
Despite the numerical disadvantage, Hull continued to set the tempo of the game. And when they had another lineout near the home side’s try line, there was no surprise to see another try scored. The only surprise was that Jobling did not score it. This time, it was Loma Kivlau fell over the line for Hull’s fourth try. Humberstone’s conversion opened up a 24-7 lead.
Blaydon were quick to respond and a deft chip ahead was gathered by their winger Jack Appleton who raced 60 yards to score an unconverted near the posts to leave the hosts trailing 24-12.
It was a temporary respite as Hull kept their foot on the throttle. This time, a five-metre scrum saw the pack power over the line with Will Hall in possession of the ball over the line. Humberstone’s reliable boot gave Hull a 31-12 lead going into the final quarter of an hour.
Nathan Blake’s converted try made the scoreboard look that little bit better for Blaydon but it was Hull who had the final say in an entertaining game. Keane Naylor showed that the backs can also score tries when he took Steve McColl’s pass to go over the line in the closing stages. Humberstone’s conversion secured a 19-point win for Hull.