A FLURRY of tries late in the first half saw Ellingham & Ringwood’s hopes of lifting the Hampshire Bowl dashed by league rivals Eastleigh.
The Es were ultimately undone 44-6, despite being within two points of the team which had finished third in London Three South West this season.
In front a large crowd at the Raymond Brown Memorial Ground on Saturday, Ellingham played into the wind and conceded an early try before veteran Andy Weeks kicked a successful penalty.
The sides traded penalties to take the score to 8-6 after 30 minutes but Eastleigh’s purple patch of three tries and two conversions before the break effectively ended the contest.
Three further efforts after the break made it a one-sided affair but Es skipper Duncan Soden was far from despondent at the final whistle.
“It was disappointing to lose in the final but we’ve had a good cup run and must now use this to build foundations for next season,” he said.
Ellingham ended their campaign in sixth position with 10 wins from 22 league matches.