NEW coach Gary Thornton started his York City Knights reign with a 32-22 defeat at Whitehaven in the Championship.

The Knights trailed only 8-6 at the break and 14-12 early in the second half, but Whitehaven pulled clear midway through the second period.

However, two late tries from Hull dual-registration winger Tom Lineham ensured the visitors gained a bonus point.

Earlier, James Ford and Jack Lee had touched down for York, while Simon Brown kicked three goals on his debut.