Led by proud Indigenous player Jake Foster the Mounties have continued their charge towards the finals with an impressive 40-0 victory against the North Sydney Bears on their return to GIO Stadium this afternoon in Close the Gap Round.
Mosese Pangai bagged himself a hat-trick in the rout with the centre continually causing headaches for the Bears. After today’s result the side could sit as high as third on the NSW Cup ladder if results go their way this weekend because they boast a superior points differential to those around them.
A four try to nothing first half set up the win with the Bears unable to get anything going against an impressive Mounties outfit. Mounties opened the game in ominous fashion when talented Raiders youngster Jack Ahearn opened the scoring for the home side.
It opened the floodgates as Mosese Pangai, Joey Bond, and Reece Robinson all scored tries before half time.
With the Mounties probably unlucky to only take an 18-0 lead into the break considering how well they were playing. When Shane Shackleton crossed for the first try of the second half under the posts it looked like the Mounties could run up a cricket score.
Foster was wreaking havoc down the left edge attack and he set up Pangai’s second try of the afternoon to take the Mounties out to a 28-0 lead after 54 minutes. The game then became a bit of an arm wrestle with the Mounties defending their line manfully and keeping the Bears scoreless.
Some razzle dazzle from Sami Sauiluma left the Bears defence in 6’s and 7’s before he set up the try for the Mounties other winger Jeremy Hawkins in the corner. The conversion by Matt Place was a beauty from the sideline extending the Mounties lead to 34-0.
Pangai’s third try in the 79th minute completed a comprehensive win for the Mounties with Place bringing up the 40 points right on full time. The Mounties will face a good test next week when they return to Sydney to face ladder leaders Penrith at Leichardt Oval next Saturday.