Written by: Rebecca Westlake
Tensions flared in this Round 14 clash between the Western Suburbs Magpies and the Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles with an early altercation setting the scene for a flashback of the Fibros and Silvertails era.
An early penalty, gave Blacktown Workers the first scoring opportunity thanks to a convincing dummy from Cade Cast who sent Joey Lussick over the line, giving the visitors a 6-nil lead after just a few minutes.
Western Suburbs produced a try soon after, with a nice offload from Robbie Rochow that continued momentum and gave Tyson Gamble a kicking opportunity which resulted in a solo try after the ball ricocheted off a Sea Eagles centre to even the score.
Wests marched back up the field and given a repeat set resulting in a short goal line drop out from the Sea Eagles which landed in the hands of Lucas Price and set up the Magpies for their second try.
Gamble was amongst the try assists once more when he put boot to ball, aiming for the in goal area, but thanks to a favourable error from fullback Jade Anderson, Braden Robson was awarded his first try of the afternoon.
Soon after, Robson claimed his second when he found himself on the receiving end of a perfectly timed Gamble chip kick widening the margin to 16-6 in favour of the home side.
Jade Anderson sent his team up field after he busted through the arms of the Wests defensive line. A last tackle kick from Cust found the hands of Tevita Funa who crossed the line leaving the visitors trailing by 4 at the break.
Returning to the field, the Magpies were keen to continue their half time lead, and did so with Harry O’toole crossing over after a short side play with try assists from Jacob Liddle and Toni Tali.
The Magpies continue to widen the margin after a long ball from Lucas Price put Robson in for his first hat trick of the season. A successful conversion gave the home side a 14 point lead with just as many minutes remaining.
In the final minutes of play, the Sea Eagles muscled up field and put Fred Mauala in the perfect position to score from dummy half, going across the line almost untouched. Hastings converted, leaving the final score 26-18 and a win for Western Suburbs Magpies.
Western Suburbs Magpies 26 (Robson 3, Gamble, O'Toole tries; Gamble 3/5 goals) def. Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles 18 (Lussick, Funa, Mauala tries; Hastings 3/3 goals)
Written by: Leo Epifania
Western Suburbs prevailed over a formidable Penrith Brothers 23-22 in a match which showed why Brothers are worthy of a place in the Ron Massey Cup.
The first 15 minutes of the match saw Western Suburbs skip to a 12-point advantage courtesy of Kelsey Coakes and Brendan Waters as the visitors sought to put their stamp on the match early and extinguish the chances of the home side. While Wests dominated the opening exchanges, questionable penalties brought the Brothers into the match giving with quality ball on the Wests goal line, and the locals were good enough to cash in on the opportunities with tries to Kurt Falls and Geofery Duku. The Magpies defence had some bite to it, forcing Penrith to the extremities of the field to register points.
Wests’ attack was also potent, and only some untimely handling errors released the pressure on Brothers. Through the errors, Penrith turned the momentum of the match in their favour.
The half ended in controversy, as the Magpies kicked a field goal that clearly went through the posts, only to be denied by the referee, Wests taking a 16-10 lead to the sheds at the interval.
The 2nd half was tailor made for the Brothers, with a strong wind behind their backs and a small yet vocal crowd present, the home ground advantage saw them finish the 2nd half strongly.
Both sides traded blows for most of the 2nd half, with Brothers throwing everything at the Magpies defence with no result. Eventually, though, Brothers, on the back of another error, crossed to level the scores at 16 apiece.
The Magpies really dug deep and threw some hard running in attack and heavy collisions in defence to claw their way to a 23 to 16 lead through a Kelsey Coakes try and a Brendan Waters field goal. Wests were again on the end of a tough call when Brendan Waters seemed to have clearly crossed the line only to have a penalty given for a double movement.
The locals were able to cross for a consolation try, to bring the score to 23 22, Wests running out deserved winners in a tough, hard match.
Wests Magpies play Wentworthville at Campbelltown Stadium this Friday night, which has not happened for quite a while, and we hope supporters will get there as back to back wins are vital to us at the moment.
Western Suburbs Magpies 23 (Coakes 2, Waters, Allan tries; Aldridge ¾ goals, Waters 1/1 field goals) def Penrith Brothers 22 (Falls, Duku, Ma’aelopa, Leitch tries; Falls ¾ goals)