NORTH Ribblesdale's high-scoring run continued, but they went down to a 46-31 defeat at Rishworthians on Saturday.

Ribb's pack were better than their opponents, but the hosts used their backs to outflank Ribb and eventually ran out winners, but the result masked the fact that the game was in doubt until the last ten minutes.

Ribb were strengthened by the return of the Long brothers, Josh and Tom, who both played well in defence. However, Ribb's star player was Nathan Harding at No 10, who converted four tries and a penalty and kicked well tactically and got his back line going.

Ribb started well with an early try from a maul by Adam Middleton.

Rishworthians came back with a good back move, giving their left winger room for a well-converted try in the corner.

They then scored two further tries to put them 21-7 up after 30 minutes.

Ribb came back with a try by John Long to reduce the lead to 21-14, but just before half-time Ryan Sumner went over for a try near the posts, but the referee disallowed it for a double movement.

Sumner was sin-binned for dissent, depriving Ribb of their main attacking player for the period before and after half-time.

At the start of the second half, Rishworthians scored a further try on the wing. They converted this and a penalty, to put them 31-14 ahead.

Ribb then had their best patch of the game, taking the larger opponents pack on for tries by Frankie Brown and Ian Close, both converted with long kicks by Harding.

Almost from the kick-off, Ribb were awarded a penalty which Harding converted to put the teams level at 31-31.

Rishworthians then changed their tactics, keeping the ball away from the forwards and scoring three further tries all wide out to run out 46-31 winners.

On this form, Ribb are due for a home win at home to Ripon this Saturday, which is essential if they are to move away to the middle of the league.