YORK City Knights Ladies were convincingly defeated by the Army Women on Friday night, losing 40-4 in the final of the Challenge Shield.

A hat-trick of tries from full-back Abigail Eatock inspired the victory at the Mend-a-Hose-Jungle in Castleford and means that the Army avenged their 26-24 defeat suffered at the same stage in 2017.

The Army ran in nine tries in their victory and the margin of victory could have been wider had Jordan Barnard converted better than the two she managed.

The half-back did manage to convert the Army’s first score which came after just four minutes. Carrie Roberts won her side a penalty and from it she went through the defence to score the try.

By the midway point of the half, York’s chances had virtually gone thanks to a terrific eight-minute spell by the Army that had them four scores up.

Firstly, Sarah Mitcholson finished off a move began by Barnard and Eatock before consecutive penalties gave the field position for winger Kaiya Glynn to cross in the right corner from Matilda Butler’s brilliant pass.

Then, the Army again went down the right side and Eatock claimed the first of her treble of tries, taking the ball from Barnard and surging through the gap in the try-line.

On the stroke of half-time, Eatock had a second after running over from an Ellie Hendry fumble off Roberts’ high kick - with Bernard’s conversion securing a 24-0 lead at the half-time break.

There was respite for York when Eatock was sin binned shortly after the restart and the numerical advantage paid off for the Knights.

Substitute Sam Boyes drove under the sticks for what proved to be York’s only points as Ellie Hendry hit the resulting conversion against the post.

The Army’s dominance’s resumed just five minutes later.

Eatock returned from the sin bin and her fresh legs allowed her to dash away from the chasing defence and complete her hat-trick on 55 minutes.

As the game drew to a close, the Army finished in style, scoring a trio of tries in the last dozen minutes.

Jessica McAuley applied the finishing touch to a sweeping move and then Roberts sealed her double from a quick passing move by creative half-backs Ellie Raines and Barnard.

McAuley also claimed her brace with three minutes left, capping the Army’s cup-winning and dominant display.