Penalty goals made all the difference in Cairns as Souths Logan confirmed a place in the finals by overcoming a late Pride fightback with timely penalty goals. There were three in all for the Magpies, and those 6 points was the deciding factor in a game which ended four tries a piece.
The Pride didn’t take long to get on the board after Javid Bowen scored the first of his two for the evening in just the 3rd minute. That was all the home side got in the first half, as Souths Logan scored two tries through a double to halfback Sam Scarlett and a penalty goal to lead 14-6 at the break.
The home side hit back straight after the break and it was a two point game until the 55th minute when the Magpies scored two quick tries to extend the gap out to 24-12. Tries to Cowboys fringe players Ben Hampton and Javid Bowen made the game interesting with the scoreline 26-24 with five minutes to go. A third penalty goal to Souths Logan in the last minute settled the game.
Souths Logan are now just one point off the third and fourth placed sides, and it just their record against the teams above them that is the only question heading into the finals. The Northern Pride were once again close enough without winning, but they have still not avoided finishing last yet.
SOUTHS LOGAN 28
Tries: Sam Scarlett (17m), Sam Scarlett (32m), Simione Fatafehi (55m), Cameron Booth (59m)
Goals: Jamayne Isaako 3/4 Conv, 3 Pens
NORTHERN PRIDE 24
Tries: Javid Bowen (3m), Gideon Gela-Mosby (42m), Ben Hampton (62m), Javid Bowen (74m)
Goals: Jordan Biondi-Odo 4/4 Conv
Souths Logan found a run of two wins in a row at the right time as it means they extend the gap from them to the chasing finals pack, and they also take advantage of Townsville’s losses to leapfrog them on the ladder. If they keep winning there’s the chance of a home final too.
The Magpies finished just outside of the top 6 last season, and it feels like the off season recruitment of Matt Minto has made that extra bit of difference they were looking for in 2017 to get into the finals and beyond. Good to see captain Phil Dennis named in the starting side, he is an old school footballer with plenty of skills and slots in nicely with Magpies halves.
Changes also in the team list named for the Pride with PNG eligible player and Auckland Nines star Gideon Gela-Mosby named at fullback. With a bit of extra room at the back he may weave some more magic and show all of his pace.
The Pride certainly can’t make finals, but they can still finish last, so will to get some wins when they are offered, but can’t see Souths Logan serving that up this weekend.
3. Gideon Gela-Mosby 2. Shawn Bowen 19. Javid Bowen 4. Bradley Stephen 5. Marcus Jensen 6. Jordan Biondi-Odo 7. Ryan Ghietti 15. Sheldon Powe-Hobbs 9. Connor Jones 10. Darryn Schonig 11. Nathan Wales 12. Tom Hancock 13. Graham Clark 14. Colin Wilkie 16. Aidan Day 17. Jack Brock 18. Keelan White 20. Troy Kapea 21. Matthew Musumeci
Coach: Ty Williams
Souths Logan Magpies
1. Jamayne Isaako 2. Cameron Booth 3. Lenny Magey 4. Scott Doyle 5. Luke Archer 6. Matt Minto 7. Sam Scarlett 8. George Fai 9. Travis Waddell 10. Sam Lavea 11. Simione Fatafehi 12. Brendon Gibb 13. Phil Dennis (c) 14. Jordan Scott 15. Jaydn Su’A 16. AJ Tuimavave 17. Rhys Melville 18. Jack Anderson
Coach: Jon Buchanan
|Scott St, Parramatta Park QLD 4870, Australia|