The NYC Newcastle Knights were beaten 34-16 by the Sydney Roosters at Allianz Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Despite being without mainstay half Brock Lamb the young Knights were gallant in defeat. Two late tries to the Roosters saw the score blow out in the end, and the red and blues will be disappointed after a long run of positive results.
The young Roosters started off the scoring in the seventh minute when winger Johnny Tuivasa-Sheck found enough space to beat the Knights’ defence in the right corner.
It proved a double hit as two minutes later the home side scored again, this time hooker Grant Garvey punching a hole through the middle. Intermittent first-grader Jayden Nikorima converted on both occasions, and the Knights found themselves looking at an early 12-0 deficit.
The scoring continued five minutes later though, as Garvey grabbed his second.
It wasn’t until more than half an hour had been played that the red and blues bounced back, in-form winger Matt Soper-Lawler going it alone to score in the corner.
Jake McNamara was unable to convert from out wide, but three minutes later the Knights struck again as interchange forward Mitch Casson scored his second try in three appearances.
With the half time score sitting at 16-10 it was anyone’s game to take, but four minutes into the second stanza the Roosters got back on track with a 60 metre intercept try to Kiah Cooper.
Less than two minutes later the Knights struck back via back rower Eddy Tuilotolava, who was on the end of a neat short pass near the try line.
McNamara converted to keep the Roosters’ lead to six points, and for more than 20 minutes both sides struggled for the upper hand.
It was the home side that came up trumps in the 67th minute though, Jesse Marschke stepping his way through the Knights’ line. Six minutes later Bernard Lewis crossed over in the corner to make the final score 34-16.
Knights 16 (T: Soper-Lawler, Casson, Tuilotolava, G: McNamara 2/3)
Roosters 34 (T: Garvey 2, Tuivasa-Sheck, Cooper, Marschke, Lewis, G: Nikorima 5/6)
1. Knights, 22. Sheaziah Compain, 2. Dean Kouka-Smith, 4. Kainoa Gudgeon, 5. Matt Soper-Lawler, 6. Nick Newman, 7. Jack Cogger (c), 8. Tyrone Amey, 9. Joe Morris, 20. Jordan Pinnock, 11. Eddy Tuilotolava, 12. Sam Stone, 16. Braden Robson. Interchange: 13. Mitch Casson, 14. Zac Hosking, 15. Jake McNamara, 17. Jayden Butterfield.