NATIONAL League Two North leaders Hull Ionians had to overcome a 17-point deficit to beat a determined Otley side 29-24 at Cross Green on Saturday.

Otley scored after seven minutes. They moved the ball across the pitch, and Joe Graham scored in the corner.

After securing the restart, Ben Magee caught Harry Skelton’s kick and ran through to score. Ben Smith added the conversion.

Then, after 15 minutes, Ionians lost the ball on the halfway line, and Josh Hall ran down the right hand flank to score.

Ionians began their comeback with a rolling maul close to Otley’s line, before moving it out wide and a deft back of the hand pass by Seremaia Turagabeci saw Steve Slingsby score in the opposite corner.

Otley were again defending their line, and Slingsby went over and Lewis Minikin added the conversion.

Minikin further reduced the deficit with a penalty after Otley were guilty of holding on.

Then just before half-time, Ionians took the lead with a Ben Bell try, which Minikin converted.

Ionians got their bonus point five minutes into second half when Ben Stephenson went over in the corner, and Minikin added the conversion.

The remainder of the second half saw possession and territory switch with little quarter given.

Otley got their fourth try, and losing bonus, after a slick move involving Jack Mackie, Josh Hall and Joe Rowntree gave Smith an easy conversion.