The NYC Newcastle Knights drew 30-30 with the Wests Tigers at Hunter Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Despite leading by 20 points at one stage in the second half, the young Knights weren’t able to keep out a fast finishing Tigers side desperate for points.
The young Knights started the game strongly, the two halves combining superbly in the seventh minute when Jack Cogger dinked the ball over the line for Brock Lamb to score.
With 20 minutes played the Tigers returned serve, Jacob Liddle feinting his way over from dummy-half. The away side made an error from the following restart though, and the Knights capitalised when Kainoa Gudgeon used his raw pace to beat his marker and score.
11 minutes later the red and blues were over again, hooker Joe Morris grabbing his third try in three games when he slipped over the line. Lamb’s flawless kicking from the tee made it 18-6, but minutes before halftime his opposite number Veiru Mapesone made a beeline through the Knights’ defence to score in the corner.
An error from Zac Hosking early in the second half gave the Tigers another chance to attack the Knights’ line. Mapesone looked to be on another one of his dangerous runs, until Braden Robson showed great strength to pull him out of play.
It didn’t take long for the Knights to kick into gear again after that, interchange forward Jayden Butterfield bulldozing his way over the line from ten metres out. Lamb again converted to make the score 24-10, and two minutes later more points were added to the tally when Mitch Casson scored near the uprights for his first NYC try.
Things quickly went downhill from there for the Knights, the Tigers scoring three tries in five minutes via Samuel Deffides, Daniel Roberts and Jacob Liddle. Mapesone was only able to convert on one count, the score now 30-24.
With five minutes to play the Tigers picked up two penalties close to the Knights’ line and the pressure paid off, JJ Felise scoring to cap off a remarkable comeback. Robertson converted, the final score 30-30.
Newcastle Knights 30 (T: Lamb, Gudgeon, Morris, Butterfield, Casson G: Lamb 5/5), Wests Tigers 30
1. Nick Meaney, 22. Sheaziah Compain, 12. Braden Robson, 5. Matt Soper-Lawler, 6. Brock Lamb, 7. Jack Cogger, 8. Tyrone Amey, 9. Joe Morris, 11. Eddy Tuilotolava, 14. Zac Hosking, 16. Sam Stone, 13. Ryan Glanville. Interchange: 17. Jordan Pinnock, 20. Jayden Butterfield, 18. Viko Puliuvea, 21. Mitch Casson.
6. Veiru Mapesone, 2. Jesse Jackson, 3. Ryland Jacobs, 4. Sam Defiddes, 5. Obed Karwhin, 23. Daniel Roberts, 7. Thomas Bartley, 8. JJ Felise, 9. Jacob Liddle, 22. Taniela Paseka, 11. Bayley Sironen, 12. Esan Marsters, 17. Jack Wheelhouse. Interchange: 13. Mark McCormack, 14. Daniel Peck, 15. Jakob Giles, 16. Trent Pye.