IT is becoming a familiar story for Northwich, who were defeated 53-10 at Kirkby Lonsdale on Saturday.

There was another shortage of established players, and the inability to make any real impression in this division.

Optimism had been felt prior to the trip to the South Lakes.

Like Northwich, Kirkby are struggling this season and therefore the visitors could have hoped for better things to come.

The setting could not have been better and on occasions the surroundings were more appealing than the rugby.

However, there was still a lot to take from the match, not least the performance of young prop Tom Wilson who is beginning to make his mark at this level.

Northwich could not have had a better start as a charge down from the kick off produced a foot race won by Josh Warburton who scored a try which went unconverted.

After 10 minutes the home side reduced the deficit with a penalty and after a further 10 minutes they took the lead with a converted try. This was a lead they would not surrender.

A second converted try gave KL a 17-5 lead going into the break, leaving Blacks wondering how they had not been more clinical.

The second half saw the home side running the ball wide at every opportunity, resulting in two further converted tries from which Northwich would not recover.

This was not entirely one-way traffic as the visitors went close on a couple of occasions before Tom Husbands crossed the line after a strong build up. The extras went begging and Northwich seemed to run out of steam.

Four more tries for KL, one of which was converted, only highlighted the need for a massive improvement in defence in the coming weeks.

Chris Heywood and Tom Clark were excellent and Husbands continues to develop into a fine player.

Andy Roberts will be pushing his charges during the coming weeks in order to prepare them for the challenges to come.

Northwich entertain Rossendale on Saturday, kick-off 3pm.

Northwich: 1 Tom Wilson 2 Mike Gough 3 Mark Thompson 4 Rory Williams 5 Josh Warburton 6 Aaron Collins 7 Tom Clark 8 Chris Heywood 9 Richard Hart 10 Nick Baldwin11 Kyle Clarke 12 James Weeks 13 Sam Naylor 14 Hayden Skinkis 15 Tom Husbands 16 Fraser Dodd 17 Harley Aston 18 ANO