A BRACE of Ethan Ryan tries proved in vain as Bradford Bulls Under-19s fell to a 40-22 defeat at the hands of Wigan Warriors Under-19s tonight.
The Young Bulls stood firm during the first half, with Ryan’s double sending Richard Tunningley’s side into the dressing rooms trailing title-chasing Wigan by just eight points.
The second half began in a similar vein to the first, with the visiting Warriors acting quickly to increase their advantage.
Hosts Bradford battled bravely late on, but ultimately fell short.
Wigan crossed the whitewash twice inside the opening 10 minutes, with Oliver Gildart and Jack Higginson profiting from some inventive attacking play.
The Bulls fought back immediately, however, and a superb pass from Nathan Conroy sent James Pickering over in the corner.
Ryan then bagged his first of the evening, collecting an assist from Jake Hrintchuk to level matters.
David Thompson raced clear from 90 metres to restore the Cherry and Whites’ lead during the minutes which followed.
But shortly after, winger Ryan leaped above two defenders to collect a high ball and reduce the arrears, heading into the break.
Luke Waterworth scrambled his way over from dummy half to extend the Warriors' advantage on the stroke of half-time.
And Ryan Horton was first to score in the second half, adding to the Wigan tally, before David Thompson went over for his second and the away side's sixth of the night.
The Bulls came roaring back, though, thanks to stand-off Adam Brook, who latched onto his own kick to narrow the gap.
But it was Wigan who enjoyed the last laugh when winger Joe Burgess raced away to touch down.
BULLS: Branden Pickersgill, James Pickering, Jake Hrintchuk, Ross Oakes, Ethan Ryan, Adam Brook, Nathan Conroy, Michael Paul, Callum Ogden, Steve Copeland, Emmerson Whittel, James Thornton, Jordan Baldwinson, Oliver Roberts, Niadh Currie-Clarke, Liam Kirk, Nat Light
TRIES: Pickering (11), Ryan (18, 29), Brook (54).
GOALS: Brook 3/4
WARRIORS: Gabriel Fell, Joe Burgess, Jack Higginson, Liam Forsyth, David Thompson, Oliver Gildart, Ryan Horton, Ryan Sutton, Callum Wright, Rob Lever, Nick Gregson, Jake Moore, Kyle Shelford, Luke Waterworth, Ben Austin, Kieron Sherratt, Bradley Lawrence
TRIES: Gildart (4), Higginson (8), Thompson (22, 51), Waterworth (40), Horton (46), Burgess (67).
GOALS: Horton 6/7
REFEREE: Sam Ansell