The reserve grade nib Newcastle Knights couldn’t overcome a dominant New Zealand Warriors outfit at Mt Smart Stadium on Sunday afternoon, going down 52-24.
The Knights couldn’t claw back an early scoring assault from the Warriors, who found the line on numerous occasions to score 42 points in the first half.
It wasn’t long into the match before the New Zealand side made their first dash to the line, fullback Matthew Allwood touching down for four and a successful conversion to follow.
Quickly following in the ninth minute, the Warriors making it number two, King Vuniyayawa adding to the tally before a second try came for Allwood, leading the Knights 18-nil.
Finally in the fifteenth minute, the Knights were able to put some points on the board.
A short ball from Will Pearsall put 19-year-old Nick Meaney in a great position to score on debut, but a missed conversion keep the score to just four.
Luck wasn’t on the Knights' side, Jacob Gagan got a bad bounce which saw Warriors winger Manu Vatuvei collect the scraps and cross the line for the sides fourth try in 18 minutes, to blow out the lead 24-4.
The scoring assault continued for the Warriors, halfback Mason Lino with a pinpoint kick to thread the ball for Sam Cook to pick it up across the line, before the home side collected another four with Junior Ponga charging though the Knights defence.
Mason Lino again converting to lead the Knights reserve side 36-4.
And just before halftime a short off-load to Chris Satae just ten metres from the line saw the Warriors race off to a 42-4 lead before the break.
66 minutes in, the Knights' Tom Hughes fought through a Warriors defence pack to get the side’s second try but a kick from the left couldn’t get them the conversion points.
But the Warriors soon replied, a second on the board for Cook, able to slide across the try line, adding the conversion for a 48-8 lead.
To get back into the action, In the 54th minute, a precision kick from halfback Jack Cogger saw a scramble by the post before Braden Robson came up with the try, Meaney converting to make the score 48-14.
Then another for the red and blue, Cory Denniss pushed through to the right pocket to score in the sixty-seventh minute.
But the late run didn’t last long, the Warriors Ponga scoring his second to stretch out the lead to 34 points.
Just before the siren, Denniss crosses the line to add more points to the Knights tally, before Pearsall did well to score out wide to finish the match 52-24 to the Warriors.