Knaresborough 24-17 Halifax
Halifax rue slow start as they suffer defeat to Knaresborough
Halifax RUFC were made to pay for a poor first half as they slipped to a 24-17 defeat to Knaresborough.
Buoyed by a 48-0 win over Thirsk last time out, Halifax had travelled to Hay-A-Park full of confidence.
However they faced a Knaresborough side packed with Pacific Islanders, who added pace and power to their back line. And it was the home side's backs who opened the scoring when they exploited the space created after the referee missed an off the ball incident.
Halifax responded well and an opportunist move from Callum Bowmer and Tony Curtis created the room for Stephen Jones to score.
Halifax were hampered by the loss of fly-half Paul Knapping with a hamstring injury and Knaresborough were able to exploit the gaps in the back line to extend their lead to 14-5.
And it was 21-5 at the break as Knaresborough's backs found the space out wide after a poor clearing kick.
Halifax were rightly read the riot act at the break, but they found themselves 24-5 down when the hosts slotted over a penalty.
Halifax finally woke from their slumber and were rewarded for a sustained spell of pressure with a try through new signing Chris Clough.
Halifax were now in the ascendancy, with repeated infringements at the breakdown seeing the home side reduced to 14 men. And a rolling maul resulted in a try for Curtis with Jack Ryan's conversion cutting the deficit to seven points.
Halifax threw everything at Knaresborough in a bid to pull level but could find no way through and were reduced to 14 men as Clough was sin binned.
Halifax will next entertain York RI in the first round of the Yorkshire Vase.