Three team of our five junior representative teams played over the weekend as the SG Ball and Harold Matthews sides both enjoyed the bye while the Tarsha Gale Cup team played their first match of the season having been washed-out last weekend.
The Andrew Johns and Laurie Daley Cup sides also began their 2020 campaign with mixed results.
Tarsha Gale Cup
Knights 12 (Watters, Beagan) def. by Sharks 34
Having missed out on the first game last weekend due to the wet weather, the Knights were determined to snatch their first points of the season at Maitland Sportsground on Sunday, but were met by a tough Sharks team, going down 34-12.
The girls started slow as Cronulla managed to score the first two openings tries before fullback Kyah Watters answered back with a try to keep them within touching distance as they entered half-time.
Early in the second half, a try to Lexi Beagan put the side back at level-pegging with the scores locked at 12-12, but the visitors finished off strong scoring four unanswered tries in the last fifteen minutes to seal a solid victory.
Elite Pathway Programs Manager Casey Bromilow said despite the loss, there are still positives to take out of the match.
“It was very much an arm-wrestle,” Bromilow said.
“Pretty much all of the Sharks’ tries before that last 20 minutes, came off the back of our errors. That probably cost us.
“Some players stood up and did really well…[but] there’s a bit of education still to do.
“It’s a tough game next week against the defending premiers.”
Next week sees our girls play in a Grand Final rematch against the Illawarra Steelers.
Andrew Johns & Laurie Daley Cup
Andrew Johns Cup: Knights 18 (Conn 2, Boney, Callaghan) def. GN Tigers 12
Laurie Daley Cup: Knights 4 (Jenkins) def. by GN Tigers 32
Our younger Country Rugby League teams kicked-off their seasons against the Greater Northern Tigers with the U16s Andrew Johns Cup side pulling off a late try to seal a 18-12 victory.
Trevor Boney was the hero for the side with his try-scoring and creation aiding Preston Conn to score a double while Brayden Callaghan scored the all-important last try late in the game.
Bromilow was impressed with the way the side came together even when they weren’t playing their best footy.
“The Andrews Johns side played really well,” he said.
“They were good in patches and then there were otherwise when they tried to play too sideways rather than direct.
“Some good individual performances got them over the line.”
In the Laurie Daley Cup match, the U18s Knights went down 32-4 with an Adam Jenkins try proving to be the only points the team could muster.
While the side weren’t able to contest the win as the match progressed, Bromilow is confident they were better than the scoreline suggests.
“The Laurie Daley team went toe-to-toe for a while, but the bounce of the ball just didn’t go their way,” he said.
“There was nothing that made you think they were completely better than us. We had opportunity to send the game our way, we just didn’t take them.”
SG Ball & Harold Matthews
Our U16s and U18s side will have to wait until next week for their chance to push into the top eight as they had the week off thanks to the bye.
The SG Ball currently sit 11th on the ladder and will next week travel to Perth to play the West Coast Pirates, while the Harold Matthews team will take on Illawarra Steelers next round hoping to move up from the bottom of the ladder.