THIS fixture last year ended in a defeat for the home team and the Heysham Atoms went out with the attitude that it wouldn’t happen again this year.
The Atoms were also determined to stay unbeaten in Division 3 of the North West Men’s League.
They managed to achieve both, thanks in the main to an improved second half performance.
Heysham started poorly and were guilty of several handling errors and only some good work from Liam Hall in defence prevented Ulverston from taking advantage.
When the Atoms did work up the field it was Hall in the thick of the action again, this time he was denied a try when he was judged to have placed the ball down with a double movement.
The score was still 0-0 after 20 minutes with both sets of forwards finding it hard to make yards against strong defences.
Heysham made a couple of subs to try and swing the balance but after another mistake Ulverston finally registered their first score, taking a 4-0 lead.
Atoms were next on the scoreboard however when Neil Walker dropped a ball back inside to his brother Mark who crashed over next to the posts to take the score to 6-4 in the home side’s favour.
As the half came to an end it was Ulverston again who capitalised on a weak Atoms defence when their prop crashed over after poor tackling by the home side.
The kick was successful and the score was 10-6 to the visitors at the break.
The Atoms needed to improve and they duly did.
Early in the second Neil Walker put up a big up and under and Liam Seabrook jumped to collect the ball and go over for a try to level the score.
Heysham were starting to play somewhere near their best, building pressure and position which started to grind the visitors down.
This paid off when captain Craig Dixon went clean through and used his pace to take him over to give the Atoms a 14-10 lead.
The home side had another chance when Hall went clean through only for his final pass to find the floor and not the man.
Ulverston didn’t look like scoring but against the run of play they did, when their speedy centre pounced on a loose ball to race under the posts, to give them a two point lead at 16-14.
But Heysham didn’t panic and the cool head of Stuart Lacey used his immense strength to rip the ball and score close to the posts.
Billy Livingstone was sure with the boot to put Heysham back in the lead at 20-16.
Heysham now stepped up a gear and started to control the game.
The decisive moment came when the ball found the bulking shape of Chris Helme who trundled over in the corner to put the Atoms two scores in front.
With the rain pouring down and the clock ticking down it was up to man of the match Hall to finish the scoring when he went clean through under the posts to make the final score 30-16.
The Atoms still remain unbeaten in division three and have a tough trip to local rivals Bamber Bridge next Saturday.