Losing bonus point gives plenty to build on ahead of November 30th visit of Worcester
Newcastle Falcons left Franklins Gardens with a losing bonus point in the opening round of the Aviva 'A' League on Monday night, after a push for glory came up short.
In cold and rainy conditions, tries from Andy Tuilagi and Belisario Agulla along with 10 points from the boots of Craig Willis and Brett Connon allowed the Falcons to make a game of their trip, while not yielding the desired result.
After an early penalty gave Northampton a 3-0 lead, Andy Tuilagi blasted his way through the home defence for a converted try with twelve minutes on the clock.
After plenty of points in the opening segment, the game slowed down for the remainder of the half, until Northampton took the lead on the stroke of half time through former Falcon Luke Eves, the Bristolian the beneficiary of excellent handling following a Howard Packman break.
The second half continued in the same vein as much of the first, with the Falcons enjoying plenty of possession and territory but being thwarted by the Wanderers defensive resolve. Two penalties from Willis did allow the Falcons to take a 10-13 lead, before two converted tries in four minutes swung the momentum back towards the hosts.
A sin binning for Joe Craggs made the task of reeling the hosts back in tougher, although at the end of that period, Argentine centre Belisario Agulla cut through the Wanderers drift defence to claw back five points.
A successfully conversion from Brett Connon set up a grandstand finish for the Falcons to find a winning try, but in the end the they had to make do with a losing bonus.
The next instalment of the Aviva A League takes place on November 30th at Kingston Park, when Worcester Cavaliers are the opposition in a 7pm kick off.
Entry is free to spectators with entry via the Tap & Tackle and seats available in the East Stand