In a festival of rugby at Headingley, the St Helens Women’s team secured the first victory of the night as they won 38-18 against Leeds Rhinos Women.
St Helens raced into a 6-0 lead as Emily Rudge crashed over from short range for her first of the evening.
The Rhinos would pull back level just 10 minutes later thanks to Stand-Off Caitlin Casey.
However it wouldn’t take the Saints long to march back to a six-point lead again, and again it was Emily Rudge who would cross the whitewash.
Rudge’s powerful run carved through the Leeds defence, and quick feet saw her evade Sophie Nuttall’s tackle as she crossed for her second of the evening to take it to 10-6. The extras were added and the Saints had their six-point lead back.
The scoring wasn’t over yet though. Amy Taylor added two more to the score, before a great break from Jodie Cunningham earned the rewards it deserved as Shona Hoyle crossed for the Saints third and final try of the half.
It was important for the Rhinos to start the second-half with a bang; however the Saints were the team who came out the blocks the quickest as they added two more tries to their tally.
Winger Leah Burke would add the first, as she dived over in the corner. This was quickly followed by Shona Hoyle, who broke through the Rhinos line to add her second of the night.
In the blink of an eye St Helens had gained a 22 point lead. Could the Rhinos get themselves back into the contest?
Amy Hardcastle pulled one back for the Rhinos, as she scored a fantastic solo try against her old team. Her try was the start of a sustained period of pressure for the West Yorkshire outfit. They reaped the rewards of this as Eloise Hayward crossed the Saints line. She converted her own try and now the Rhinos were back within 10 points.
The next score was crucial.
A cagey period followed, as both teams turned to a more conservative style, however the Saints would score the all-important try as Lucinda McColm crossed the whitewash. This try all but ended Leeds hopes of a dramatic comeback.
The final nail in the coffin was added by Katie Mottershead, who rounded off a dominant win for the Red Vee.