25th July, 2017
In a spine-tingling match in which the lead changed 8 times, Souths emerged winners 38-32. It’s been a familiar pattern with our Premier Colts this season, failing to close out a lead and play the full 70 minutes.
We started well, defending strongly for the first 5 minutes as Souths hammered our line and then, with our first foray into their territory, winning a scrum and scoring through a clever run by centre Reece Tapine.
But Souths centre Taipaleti caught us short in defence on the left wing and scored, with the conversion making it 7-5. A brilliant break by sidestepping fullback Josh Walker took us within 5m of the line. Then a Josh Vuta cutout pass enabled Liam Upfield to score in the corner and regain the lead 10-7.
Souths bounced back with a fine try by tall centre Makoni Niu, after a poor clearing kick. Niu was their most dangerous player, yet we persisted in kicking to him! A good team try, finished off by Tyler Gillot, saw Bond in front 15-12 at the break and then Josh Walker darted in to make it 22-12. As John Nucifora had an off-day with the boot, Josh Vuta landed the conversion.
Niu scored again down the left touchline and then their big lock was over in the corner, so Souths nudged ahead 24-22. One move our boys have perfected this season is the rolling maul and Noel Rodger touched down after this move, so we led again 27-24 with 10 minutes left.
Sadly, we couldn’t hold on as their two centres wrapped up the match - Taipaleti scored his second try and then Niu scored his third under the posts, to lead 38-27. With 2 minutes left inspirational skipper Tom McKee crashed over, unstoppable from 10m out, to narrow the gap. But time ran out and Souths had won 38-32. It was Souths’ first win of the season and left a bitter taste in our boys’ mouths, knowing they had let one get away.
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