Gungahlin Bulls (4) 30 defeated Woden Valley Rams (6) 18 at Gungahlin Enclosed Oval
The Gungahlin Bulls made the most of the mistakes of the Woden Valley Rams to run out 30-18 winners and secure back-to-back wins at Gungahlin Enclosed Oval.
The first twenty minutes of the game was dominated by strong defensive displays stopping any advances being made from both sides. Although in the 8th minute Woden centre Michael Gieger made a 70 metre line break only to be brought down just short by Gungahlin fullback Dwayne Connors.
The scoring finally got underway in the 16th minute when Gungahlin scored after constant pressure on the Rams defence. Joshua Ayers found a gap in the Woden defensive line to cross and the conversion was successful from Aiden Greenwood for a 6-0 lead.
The lead was short lived however with the Rams able to level the score in the 20th minute. The Bulls defence was unable to deal with a grubber kick, fumbling it behind their try line allowing for Grant Crapp to score. The conversion was successful by Tim Crome to level the score at 6-6.
The try scoring continued with Gungahlin restoring their lead in the 24th minute. In similar circumstances that Woden scored, a fumble by the Rams defence off a kick allowed Anthony Onorato to score and Greenwood once again converted for a six point lead.
The back and forth scoring continued with the Rams able to cross with seven minutes to go in the first half. Jeff Morgan found a gap in the middle of the defensive line of the Bulls and crossed to score next to the post for an easy conversion for Crome to once again level the score.
Woden were awarded three consecutive penalties however failed to capitalise on the opportunities knocking on 10 metres away from the try line to leave the score at 12-all going into half time.
The second half started just the way that Gungahlin would have wanted. Chris Thorley was able to regain his own kick after the kick was once again fumbled by the Woden defence. The conversion was successful for Greenwood for an 18-12 lead.
Back-to-back tries for the first time in the game allowed Gungahlin to double their lead in the 54th minute. Connors was able to capitalise on a mistake by Rams fullback Jordan Martin and hold off four defenders to score besides the upright which once again gave Greenwood an easy conversion which he converted for a 24-12 lead.
The middle of the second half became scrappy with both teams struggling to complete sets and a Gungahlin penalty kick which failed to find touch.
Woden came close twice to bringing the score back to within six however poor handling and good Gungahlin defence prevented them from scoring.
Gungahlin made the most of the strong defence they were showing by going up the other end and scoring. Some quick passes saw the ball go out wide for Greenwood to cross in the corner. The tricky conversion was successful by Thorley to give Gungahlin 18 point lead.
Woden managed to hit back right before full-time to reduce the deficit. Crome managed to hold off four defenders to score under the post and covert his own try to reduce Gungahlin’s lead to 30-18, and that is how the score remained.
Gungahlin Bulls 30 (Josh Ayers, Anthony Onorato, Chris Thorley, Dwayne Connors, Aiden Greenwood tries; Greenwood 4/4, Thorley 1/1 goals) def. Woden Valley Rams 18 (Grant Crapp, Jeff Morgan, Tim Crome tries; Crome 3/3 goals)
West Belconnen Warriors (3) 36 defeated Belconnen United Scholars (7) 24 at O’Connor
West Belconnen Warriors have gained bragging rights over their cross-town rivals the Belconnen United Scholars with a solid performance away from home.
The win sees the Warriors retain their place at third on the ladder, whilst the Scholars remain winless so far in 2015.
Next week shapes as a massive one for the Scholars as they take on the only other side yet to register a victory in 2015, the Tuggeranong Bushrangers.
West Belconnen Warriors 36 (Ryley Thomas, Tavota Arjpja-tuinsuvis, Tim Middleton, Isaac Hamad, Nic Whatman, Josh Baker tries; Tavita Ahosivi 6 goals) def. Belconnen United Scholars 24 (Keegan Mario 2, Matt Heckenberg, Mitch Shaw, Tino Sione tries; Andrew Pelisio 2 goals)
Queanbeyan Blues (1) 32 defeated Goulburn Workers Bulldogs (2) 22 at Seiffert Oval
Queanbeyan has overcome a late fight back by Goulburn to defeat the Bulldogs by 10 points in what was the first time that these two sides have faced each other since battling it out in the 2014 TTM Canberra Raiders Cup Grand Final.
The Blues raced out to a commanding 22-6 lead in the first half, but the Bulldogs fought back to trail by just four points after former NRL flyer Michael Bani scored with 18 minutes remaining.
However, a jostling run by Tyler Stevens in the 77th minute saw the speedy Blues centre score and put the result beyond question.
The win was the Blues’ third straight victory and the Bulldogs’ first loss of the year.
"We started slow, then there was a 20-minute period in that first half where we blew Goulburn away," Woolford said.
"They tested us defensively and we had a couple of blokes busted so we finished the game with only a couple of replacements. The boys won the game in the last 10 minutes purely on their will to win and wanting to play hard for each other."
The Blues were forced to work hard for the victory after they lost centre Tom Ruediger for the match with an eye injury, while second-rower Scott Rutland left the field in the first half with a groin complaint.
Goulburn Captain-Coach Mick Picker knows his side will improve after giving the defending premiers a run for their money.
"It's a healthy battle we've got going on with the Blues," the former Canberra Raider said.
"Although they've got the wood on us at the moment, we've got some young blokes who have stepped up in the last few weeks. For both clubs, it's looking pretty good."
Queanbeyan Blues 32 (Craig Wilkinson, Tyler Stevens, Tom Ruediger, Nick Lawrence, Scott Kalsbeek, Michael Cullen tries; Wilkinson 4 goals) def. Goulburn Workers Bulldogs 22 (Michael Bani, Tim Turner, Nicholas Cornish, Ben Picker tries; Picker 3 goals)
Queanbeyan Kangaroos (5) 30 defeated Tuggeranong Bushrangers (8) 20 at Greenway
Queanbeyan has registered back-to-back victories and continued Tuggeranong’s disappointing start to the 2015 season with a 10 point victory at Greenway.
The win by the Kangaroos sees Aaron Gorrell’s men draw level with the Bulldogs, Warriors and Bulls on four competition points however they are placed outside of the top four due to their points differential.
Despite their spirited performance, the third consecutive loss by the Bushrangers sees them situated at last place on the ladder.
Queanbeyan Kangaroos 30 (Bryan Cronan, Matt Adam, Glenn Baker, Adam Pearce, Sione Afemui tries; Jack Miller 5 goals) def. Tuggeranong Bushrangers 20 (Brendan Brophy 2, Matt Gruber, Lachlan Hurst tries; Mitch McAppion 2 goals)