After a loss in a shaky first game of the season Darlington RFC Colts had an immense season winning the County Cup and just missing out on the league.
Darlington were only one of two teams to have a positive point difference with it being 162+, only bettered by league winners Penrith.
The Colts first game and first loss of the season came at the hands of a 40-7 humbling by the league champions.
Colts flanker Stephen Bird said “our first loss, which was the first game of the season, left everyone with a sense of worry about the rest of the season”
“We thought things like are we good enough to compete with other teams?”
As it happened, they were definitely good enough only losing one more league game all season and winning the rest.
Outside of the league, the Colts lost one game all season in a 12-29 friendly match against Blaydon, who finished third in the league.
After a good season and with more talent lined up can the Colts replicate their 2021-22 triumphs next season?
There is a good chance they can, they will be keeping hold of their main players and have more youth coming through the ranks.
Bird added “the year below mine in our club is playing at an exceptional level, they have only lost 2 games this season”
“A lot of the youth are hungry and will be eager to impress next season, they always come into the squad looking to show us up”
After how the team finished last season the morale will be high going into the next as well as the team having bonded over the last 12 months.
The obvious high moment of the season was lifting the County Cup after beating Horden & Peterlee 19-14 in the last game of the season.
The team look to be in a strong place after the worst start imaginable, losing a game in which they got one try.
But a strong league campaign and a trophy winning cup run have left this as one of the more successful seasons in the Colts recent history.