Intrust Super Cup Round 14 proved a big weekend for the top of the table with the Burleigh having their lead of the competition cut from four points to two by the Northern Pride, and only the Townsville Blackhawks took advantage as both other nearest challengers Redcliffe and Souths Logan lost on the road to Norths and the Sunshine Coast respectively.
Tweed Heads bounced back from a loss last weekend to sneak home against the Capras with a late field goal. The PNG Hunters also got a much-needed win over the Mackay Cutters. But the ultimate breakthrough came at Kougari Oval as Wynnum got their first home win of the season at the expense of the Ipswich Jets.
So the Intrust Super Cup remains as open as ever after Round 14, and the best of the round that was awaits in the Best of Intrust Super Cup Round 14 review.
NORTHERN PRIDE SURPRISE ON THE ROAD AGAIN
An interesting fact about the 2018 Intrust Super Cup season so far, that any TV game featuring the Northern Pride has been won by the away side. On this occasion that means that the Northern Pride caused quite another upset against a table topping Burleigh who were unbeaten at home before the weekend. They had previously knocked off Redcliffe also.
It was highly entertaining game between two of the form sides of the competition, the lead changing several times, and a late try sealing the upset for the Pride.
The scoring came in waves, Burleigh grabbing the lead early before the Pride scored two before the break, and one just after to hold an 18-6 lead. Then it was the Bears team to go on a scoring spree, and they scored four tries in 13 minutes to be up 28-18 with 15 minutes to play. They would live to regret a missed conversion for one of those tries later.
Cowboys former Mr Fixit Ben Hampton scored his second try of the afternoon with ten minutes to go, and the Pride snatched the game through Gideon Gela-Mosby in the 79th minute, and a quality sideline conversion. It was just a third loss for Burleigh this season, and a 5th win in six for the Pride who remain fifth on the ladder but are closer to the teams above after the weekend.
ONLY ONE OF THE TOP THREE CHALLENGERS TAKE ADVANTAGE OF BURLEIGH SLIP
With Burleigh slipping up at one in the weekend’s first game, the teams in equal second had a chance to close the gap to the Bears to just two points. Only Townsville took that gift as they had a win at hone over the Easts Tigers 32-0. The other top contenders Redcliffe went down to northside rivals Norths Devils, and Souths Logan were also beaten on the road on the Sunshine Coast.
The Blackhawks flattered themselves with three tries in the last 10 minutes against the Tigers, but were still in control of the game taking a 12-0 lead into half time and extending that just after the break. There was a try for the returning Zac Santo, an excellent performer for Townsville previously who has returned after an incomplete NRL mission
Norths Devils got back to winning ways, and who better than Redcliffe to do it against, and it keeps them in the Top 6 for now. It was a tight first half which saw Redcliffe lead 12-4 at the break and extend that further with a converted try just after. Slowly but surely the Devils got back into the game, scoring four tries from the 53rd minute, wrapping up the game with the final two in the 73rd and 77th minutes to run out 28-20 victors.
Souths Logan, who were outright second not long ago, lost their second in a row in a low scoring game on the Sunshine Coast. More of than later.
ASE BOAS RETURNS FOR PNG HUNTERS AS THEY DO IT EASY AGAINST MACKAY
A key moment in the 63rd minute in the game in Port Moresby for the PNG Hunters as captain and main playmaker Ase Boas returned to the field after missing the last few weeks with injury.
The game was well and truly under control by that stage as the Hunters got back to winning ways against the last placed Mackay Cutters. The two team traded early tries, but a quick burst of two tries in the 21st and 25th minute saw the Hunters take a handy 20-6 to half time. One of those tries was to Thompson Teteh, who has scored for the second week in a row and is showing good signs for the Hunters since his return to the side.
Another returner who seems to be finding the tryline is Stanton Albert, and the prop’s return from England seems to be one factor in the upturn in form of the Hunters, he scored the Hunters final try in the 61st minute. Mackay got themselves a consolation try in the 71st through their own returning player Cooper Bambling, but it wasn’t enough to avoid the Cutters remaining last.
Good signs though for the Hunters with the way Watson Boas has stepped up in the absence of his brother, and the 5/5 goal kicking gives an additional option for the Hunters.
SANDOR EARL RETURNS TO RUGBY LEAGUE WITH THE SUNSHINE COAST
Sandor Earl, seemingly the scapegoat for the whole Dank drama in rugby league made a successful return to rugby league after a knee injury paused his comeback through the Melbourne Storm.
His side, the Sunshine Coast Falcons, got home in a low scoring affair against the Souths Logan Magpies. There was just two penalties for the home side, and an unconverted try to the visitors to show for in a tight first half on Saturday. The second half saw some more points, with the Falcons scoring two tries to one to hand the Magpies a second straight loss, both on the road.
Tweed Heads got back to winning ways on the weekend at Piggabeen, but only just, as they pushed all the way by a plucky Central Capras in a low scoring affair. Just the four tries were scored in total, one to each side in each half, the difference being the 78th minute field goal by Lindon McGrady. Tweed Heads are equal on points with sixth placed Norths Devils.
Wynnum gave their fans something to cheer about at home for the first time this season with a 30-24 win over the Ipswich Jets on Sunday afternoon. It looked like being a good afternoon for the Seagulls fans, as they scored four first half tries to lead 24-2 just before half time. Ipswich then scored a try a minute before and after half time to get themselves back into the game, but Wynnum responded with a try in the 56th minute to lead 30-14, and look reasonably safe. Ipswich though kept pressing and made the home fans nervous with tries in the 61st and 73rd minutes, but Wynnum hung on to end their run of losses at home.
INTRUST SUPER CUP ROUND 14 RESULTS IN FULL
Burleigh Bears 28 NORTHERN PRIDE 30
SUNSHINE COAST FALCONS 14 Souths Logan Magpies 8
TOWNSVILLE BLACKHAWKS 32 Easts Tigers 0
TWEED HEADS SEAGULLS 13 Central Capras 12
PNG HUNTERS 26 Mackay Cutters 12
NORTHS DEVILS 28 Redcliffe Dolphins 20
WYNNUM SEAGULLS 30 Ipswich Jets 24