NORTH Ribblesdale travelled to high flying Baildon knowing it was a must win game if their title challenge was to be maintained and so it transpired.

Playing down the slope Ribb were first out of the blocks but only had a Tom Davidson penalty to show for their endeavours.

The hosts then scored a try against the run of play but following that it was the visitors who would dominate every facet of the game. Ralph Wellock scored his first try in Ribb colours after good work from Callum Mathew and Simon Bolland gave him the chance to finish impressively.

Another Davidson penalty extended the away side’s lead to 13 - 5 and then creative full back Ben Coultherd finished off another flowing move for a converted try to give the boys in blue a 20- 5 interval lead.

A Baildon comeback was expected as they had the advantage of the slope, but Ribbs’ second half performance was outstanding. Matty Close and Elliot Marklew dominating at scrum time Baildon failed to make any impression on the Ribb defence in which Ryan Sumner and Harry Mathew excelled.

The visitors scored another three tries through Wellock, Elliot Marklew who burrowed over from close range and Simon Bolland capped it all near full time with a team try that would have graced any venue.

A final score of 39 - 5 to Ribb was an emphatic statement of intent in their promotion push and makes them the side to beat.

Adam Middleton was an unsung hero in the second row and youngster Callum Mathew impressed in only his second game at scrum half supplying quick ball to a lively set of backs.

The Settle side have it all to play for in their push for promotion, and the previous week had set them on their way when they beat Ossett 31-0.

The victory sent them to the summit of the league with a hard earned but ultimately convincing win against their opponents, who were visiting Grove Park for the first time.

In front of a, now expected, bumper crowd Ribb were soon on the attack but failed to break through. Ossett threatened on a couple of occasions with the last pass letting them down. Centre Simon Bolland then broke through and following impressive work from Ben Coultherd, and Freddie Spensley winger Michael Robinson made no mistake from the half way line to score an excellent try in the corner.

An error strewn period followed but prominent centre Bolland forced his way over from close range to give Ribb a 10 - 0 interval lead.

Playing towards the balcony always gives Ribb a boost and so it transpired. Following increasing pressure, the Ossett defence gradually gave way and winger Robinson was put in for another two tries firstly by Tom Davidson and then by Bolland. Full back Ben coultherd capped a dynamic performance with a gather, chip, regather and outpace the defence to round off the scoring. Three second half tries were converted by Tom Davidson and Freddie Spensley to give a 31 - 0 final score.

Up next for Ribb is an away fixture against Bramley Phoenix in Counties Two Yorkshire this Saturday.