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Rookie Report: Young side impressing as season turns for home

The weekend’s Knock-On-Effect NSW Cup clash against the South Sydney Rabbitohs saw the Newcastle Knights exhibit a high-scoring victory with a 44-30 win.

The team soared ahead in the first half despite fielding a super young side.

“The brand of footy the boys played was phenomenal. It was a quality 40 minutes from us,” Head Coach Andrew Ryan said.

Dylan Lucas gave an outstanding performance, scoring three tries in the opening 30 minutes as the Knights stormed to a 32-6 half-time lead.

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“I often give Dylan raps. He just goes about his business,” Ryan added.

“He was probably one of our best performers before he got injured and I think in the last two games he’s been outstanding as well.

“He played on the wing today but left centre, left wing anywhere you know, he’ll go and do a job. He’d play front row if you asked him to.”

Daniel Ticehurst was also a stand out.

“He set up a try early and made some good carries. He was impressive but in the first 40 minutes I think everyone played their part,” Ryan said.

The game also provided opportunity for young recruits Krystian Mapapalangi and Mitch Black to showcase their talent, with the duo impressing with quality displays.

After an avalanche of first half tries which set up a 32-6 half-time lead, the Knights were far less clinical in the second 40 minutes, leaking 24 points.

However, Ryan wasn’t concerned about the comeback.

“You never like to leak that many points but there was always going to be a change,” he said.

“I said at half time there’s going to be some challenges for us.

“When we feel that momentum shifting, we need to try and put a stop to it so that’s definitely an improvement area for us.”

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The win puts the team just outside of the top five, three points away from fourth placed North Sydney.

“We’ve had a really good run over the last couple of weeks, obviously losing to Parramatta but it was good to bounce back and get the two points today.

“It’s pretty tight up the top there so you need to keep winning.”