South Darwin has laid down a massive statement ahead of the Darwin XXXX A-Grade finals after edging Casuarina in an 8-3 thriller at Rugby Park.
The Rabbitohs entered Round 15 as massive underdogs with the Cougars riding an 11-game winning streak but scrapped their way to victory in wet conditions with Joe Sorowale’s try proving the difference.
Both sides traded penalty goals and had their opportunities in a see-sawing affair that saw plenty of near misses, dropped ball, and scrambling defence.
“Defence was pretty standout from both sides, obviously it a tight scoreline and still could’ve gone either way, but we’re happy with our defence and our try came off some high-risk play,” South Darwin coach Jack Forrest said.
Round 15 A-Grade Results
South Darwin 8 def Casuarina 3
Uni Pirates 17 def Palmerston 10
“It was a big night out for our boys – I thought Cougars dominated territory and possession – but we held tight, had another opportunity we could’ve quite convert down the right side and I’m proud of the effort.”
With South Darwin and Casuarina now set to collide in next weekend’s major semi final, Forrest was quick to take the underdog tag against Luigi Andreoli’s minor premiers.
“We still feel as though Cougars and all teams at the top can knock each other off on their day, so we’re not going to be seduced by this win. We’ll run up against them in two weeks time for the major semi and obviously the winner goes straight through to the decider, so there’s plenty to play for and Cougars will be up for it.”
The Rabbitohs’ win condemned Uni Pirates to third place despite their 17-10 away win over Palmerston, with the two sides preparing for a winner-takes-all minor semi final next weekend.
COMING UP THIS WEEKEND
Juniors - Friday Night under Lights
Darwin Masters 10s (Saturday & Sunday)
B-Grade makeup fixtures
Outside backs Haydon Turner and George Maillis crossed the whitewash with Robbie Butcher landing both conversions and a penalty to see off a spirited Crocs at Fred Pass Reserve.
In the NT Nitumen & Asphalt B-Grade competition, Swampdogs and Casuarina bagged wins over Uni Pirates and South Darwin respectively while Katherine’s Rucking Roos missed a golden chance to sew up top spot after playing out out a 10-all draw with Darwin Dragons.
However, they’ll get another shot at minor premiership glory when they tackle Swampdogs in a make-up fixture this coming Saturday following the Masters 10s.
In the Darwin women’s competition, Dragons continued their unbeaten streak with a six-try romp over Casuarina before a Brielle Felton double guided Palmerston to a 20-10 home victory over Uni Pirates.