YORK RUFC have stretched their lead at the top of the North One East table to 16 points after winning 34-24 at Moortown.

Heading into the fixture, Moortown had not suffered a defeat on home soil for two years, were on a five-match unbeaten run and sat third in the table.

Yet, York came away as the victors in another major boost to their promotion cause.

The game started the game at breakneck pace.

York's backs and forwards were combining well and after six minutes, the visitors broke from their 22 and went the length of the pitch with Shane Goulding scoring the try after a raking pass from Will Fordy opened up the home defence.

Almost straight from the kick-off, York scored again.

Chris Fox collected the ball and passed to Declan Cusack who in turn put Cade Robinson through.

Again the ball was recycled quickly allowing Goulding to collect his second try with Cusack adding the conversion.

The pressure on Moortown was unrelenting and on 15 minutes, Cusack added a penalty to take the York lead to 15-0.

Many sides would have buckled in response to York’s start but not Moortown.

After 18 minutes they grabbed an interception try to bring them back into the game.

The next quarter of an hour was controlled by Moortown’s powerful running from their forwards backed up by intelligent kicking in the halves, allowing them to play in York’s half.

It was no surprise when Moortown added a second try, which was converted to cut York's lead to one point on the half hour.

This galvanised York, whose forwards were starting to go through some good phased possession, with Will Scholey, Cade Robinson and Luke Stockton were punching holes in the Moortown defence.

With Moortown on the back foot, a lovely delayed pass from Cusack opened up Moortown and Ben Dyson-Dent was on hand to finish off another flowing move.

Cusack added the conversion to take York into a 14-22 half time lead.

As Moortown resumed the game's action in the second period, the York support felt the next score was crucial.

York collected the kick off and controlled the ball through their forwards working their way up the pitch.

As the ball went to the backs, Sam Forbes broke through, passing to Rob Hodges who carried well before Will Fordy finished off another raking York attack.

Cusack added the conversion.

Moortown came straight back at York forcing a succession of scrum penalties and eventually the ball was spread wide through the backs for Moortown to score in the corner.

Another difficult conversion was slotted over, taking the score to 21-29 after 50 minutes.

In a pulsating game, York were the next to score.

Cusack jinked his way past several defenders and created space for Toby Atkin to score.

With the conversion missed, York held a 13 point lead.

The game now settled into a midfield battle with the defences of both sides on top.

The final score went to Moortown through a penalty though York's lead proved too strong.

Elsewhere, York RI travelled to Halifax, in the only game to go ahead in the Yorkshire Four Premier, and came away as 35-0 winners.

With Burley and Bramley Phoenix picking up wins last weekend, it was important for RI to do so as well and keep the pressure on their promotion rivals.

From the off, RI showed their intentions, looking to move the ball and working their way up field.

Some early pressure led to a penalty, which was converted by scrum-half Baptiste Briu.

More good work gave further field position and with the scrum once again dominant, the visiting pack scored a pushover try, with Lewis Starbuck extending the lead to 8-0.

RI continued to control the game for the remainder of the half.

Halifax did get a couple of attacking opportunities within the RI half, looking to use a well-organised catch and drive from lineouts, but the visitors were up to the challenge.

Before the end of the half, further points were added by RI, with kickable penalty opportunities taken - 14-0 was their half-time lead.

RI again controlled the early part of the second half and after constant pressure the next try arrived.

Some organised work from the forwards drew the defence in, allowing space for a break in midfield from centre Rich Tafa, who was able to offload for Briu to score under the posts and convert his own try.

The visitors upped their attacking game and played with more pace, which allowed space for fly-half Tim Lewis to break, round the fullback and dot down, with Briu converting.

Then, some good work from Briu, Starbuck and Ben Hartop down the short side meant that Tafa was able to go over unchallenged, with another Briu conversion taking the score to 35-0.

And, Nestle Rowntree won 42-35 in their friendly encounter against York RUFC 3rds.

York made a bright start and, with Trees trying to play open rugby, they came unstuck and off went York to score under the posts.

However the Trees forwards took control of the ball soon after and a good driving mail saw skipper and Ryan Roodt break off and score, though the kick was missed.

As Trees continued to play open rugby, an interception undid them and again a flying Fijian for York scored to put them 14-5 ahead.

Back came Trees and another drive saw hooker Ryan Corker score on 15 minutes.

Trees seemed to take control and fly-half John Hatton crossed the line 10 minutes later, but again the conversion was missed.

Then, before half-time, the pace of York took over and they scored twice more to go 28-15 up.

By the restart of the second half, the Trees forwards take over again and Roodt broke blind from a scrum to score with Ali O'Gara converting.

That was quickly followed by second-rower Tom Eaton crashing through to score to bring Trees back into the game.

But again their enterprising play saw another interception try and York led 35-27.

By this point, Trees were defending well and they then took control in the final quarter. On the hour mark, Roodt completed his hat-trick before scrum-half Romain Cames twisted and turned to go over.

O'Gara converted from out wide and, with five minutes left on the clock, he sealed the game for Trees with a long range penalty.