Bath Rugby Under-16s and Under-18s returned to action on Saturday as they travelled to Dings Crusaders to take on Bristol Bears.
The Under-16s, playing their first and final match of the season, kicked off the day in the morning and due to both sides not playing for over a year, the beginning proved a pretty scrappy affair.
Bristol scored two tries early on but outstanding individual moments led to James Short and Kacey Pike crossing for Bath who added two further tries Charlie Brook and Rory Cameron to head into the interval 24-12 ahead.
Raff Weston converted twice in the first period and collected five points of his own in the second half through great strength and footwork.
Three scores saw Bristol level at 31-31 but a second Pike try and resolute defending secured victory for the junior Blue, Black and Whites.
Bath Rugby U16 team that faced Bristol Bears
15. Charlie Brook, 14. Matthew Hall, 13. Rory Crum, 12. James Short, 11. Jack MacLennan, 10. Raff Weston, 9. Ieuan Davies; 1. Ed Patterson, 2. Tommy Baynham, 3. Harry Culverhouse, 4. Andy Eary, 5. Rory Cameron, 6. Harry Bedford, 7. George Timmins, 8. Kacey Pike
Replacements: 16. Ed Wrench, 17. Ollie Bowman, 18. Jack Bennett, 19. Jack Haythornthwaite, 20. Ollie Byrne, 21. Cassian McLoughlin, 22. Jamie Cook, 23. Hugo Marriage, 24. JJ Marlow
Similarly high-scoring, Bath Rugby Under-18s ran out 33-26 winners in Bristol and started well in the afternoon and were relentless in their defensive efforts.
The forwards pressurised the hosts leading to Freddie Charles scoring and after a Bears score, another powerful maul led to Arthur Green crossing.
Two Bristol tries followed but it was Bath’s attacking prowess early in the second half which resulted in three of their own.
First Will Morris squeezed across the whitewash and Kofi Barton-Byfield displayed great speed to beat two Bristol backs and go under the posts. Ciaran Donoghue hit a hard line and finished by side-stepping the home full-back to round of the Bath scoring ahead of a late Bristol consolation.
Bath Rugby U18 team that faced Bristol Bears
15. Will Morris, 14. Kofi Barton-Byfield, 13. Ethan Hawtin, 12. Sam Harris, 11. Max Ashton, 10. Tom Bieneman, 9. Freddie Charles; 1. Kobi Joyce, 2. Jasper Spandler, 3. Archie Maggs, 4. Will Jeanes, 5. Josh Dingley, 6. Mackenzie Graham, 7. Tom Ahl, 8. Arthur Green
Replacements: 16. Jac Therrien, 17. Jaden Ephgrave, 18. Paula Fifita, 19. Ben Lamos, 20. Max Jenkins, 21. Ollie Cook, 22. Ben Adams, 23. Ciaran Donoghue
Academy Manager Craig Lilley said: “We are really pleased with the performances of both age groups after what has been a season of hard work from all coaches and players.
“We’re really thankful to Bristol for accommodating the Under-16s and a big thank you must go to the players and coaches for their hard work over the past year.
“Our Under-18s performed brilliantly and showed many aspects from the past year of learning in their performance.
“They have a seven-day turnaround to prepare for a match against Leicester Tigers which will be a good opportunity for them to feel what it is like to prepare for a fixture with a full week of training. The Tigers game is a good chance for the group to take the learnings from the Bristol game and put them into practice."