TTM Canberra Raiders Cup: Round 5 Wrap Up
Gungahlin Bulls (3) 22 defeated Tuggeranong Bushrangers (7) 6 at Gungahlin Enclosed Oval
Gungahlin has continued Tuggeranong’s win-less start to the year with a comprehensive 16 point victory at home.
The win was the Bulls’ fourth consecutive triumph and has seen them skip four points ahead of fourth place on the table, the Woden Valley Rams.
“Our goal is to play in the semi-finals this year,” said Gungahlin five-eighth Chris Thorley.
“Gungahlin hasn’t played in the semi-finals for a number of years but we’re confident that we can turn that around this year if we keep working hard and learning from guys like Thommo, Linc and Doc (former Raiders Troy Thompson, Lincoln Withers and David Howell).”
The Bulls have developed Gungahlin Enclosed Oval into a fortress and remain undefeated at home in 2015.
Gungahlin Bulls 22 (Aidan Greenwood, Dwayne Connors, Adam Nedic, Michael Sollis tries; Chris Thorley 3 goals) defeated Tuggeranong Bushrangers 6 (Jayden Pollard 1 try; Matt Gruber 1 goal)
Queanbeyan Blues (1) 34 defeated Queanbeyan Kangaroos (6) 18 at Seiffert Oval
The Blues have secured bragging rights and two valuable competition points by defeating their cross-town rivals, the Kangaroos, at home.
The Queanbeyan local derby is always a hotly contested affair and the second half fight back by the Kangaroos ensured that the Round 5 clash did not disappoint.
The Blues raced out to a flying start with four quality tries to eventually head into the sheds with a 22-6 half-time lead.
A more spirited performance in the second stanza however saw the Kangaroos claw their way back to a 22-18 deficit, before the defending premiers eventually prevailed 34-18 with CRRL representative backs Tyler Stevens and Tom Ruediger snaring doubles.
On his 25th birthday, James Woolford, also got on the scoresheet with a try, in what was a memorable game for the hooker given that it was the first time that he played with his cousin Zac after coming down from the Newcastle competition.
"Newcastle is a pretty strong comp and I wanted to keep testing myself down here; my old man played for the Blues and I thought I'd give it a crack," James said.
"I've never played with Zac so it was good to strap the boots on with family. With both of us out there it creates a bit more threat around the ruck when the big boys are tired in middle."
Despite slipping to sixth place on the ladder, Kangaroos Captain-Coach Aaron Gorrell remained positive after the loss.
"To the boys' credit we did the tough stuff and got back into the game," he said.
"A couple of different bounces of the ball and decisions from our boys, and we probably win.
"Playing the so-called benchmark and getting back in the game shows we're a new team who aren't too far away."
Queanbeyan Blues 34 (Tyler Stevens 2, Tom Ruediger 2, Adam Misios, James Woolford tries; Craig Wilkinson 5 goals) defeated Queanbeyan Kangaroos 18 (Aaron Gorrell, Adam Pearce, Sione Afemui tries; Jack Miller 3 goals)
Woden Valley Rams (4) 42 defeated Belconnen United Scholars (8) 20 at Phillip
Woden has turned around a four match losing streak to win their first game since the opening round of the season after a fantastic performance at home.
Despite the fact that they have been unable to secure a win in their past four encounters, Rams Coach Ash Barnes hasn’t been displeased with his side’s efforts by any means.
“We’ve been in the fight in every game this year, that’s what I’m proud of,” Barnes said. “The highest margin that we have lost by this year was 14 and that was against the defending premiers [Queanbeyan Blues].
“In comparison to last year, the score may have blown out in some of those games so there are positive signs ahead for this group of players.”
On the back of a terrific performance by Woden’s young, but promising forward pack, centre Tim Crome registered a personal points haul of 18 after scoring two tries and slotting five conversions.
The victory by Barnes’ men sees the Rams climb to fourth place on the ladder.
Woden Valley 42 (Tim Crome 2, Josh Pheeney, Junior Moala, Eddie Jenkins, Kalani Going, Steve Ferry, Jeff Morgan tries; Crome 5 goals) defeated Belconnen United 20
Goulburn Workers Bulldogs (2) 28 defeated West Belconnen Warriors (5) 16 at Goulburn Workers Arena
West Belconnen has suffered two losses in consecutive weeks to both of last year’s Grand Finalists after going down to Goulburn 28-16.
A week earlier, the Warriors went down 30-6 against the defending premiers, the Queanbeyan Blues.
“It’s a tough couple of weeks for us but I suppose you have to play those sides at some point this year, it’s just unfortunate for us that they are back-to-back,” winger Joe Cramp said in the lead up to the game.
“It’s a good test for us to see where we are at as a side and we will learn what we need to do to compete with the top premiership contenders."
Errors at bad times cost the Warriors dearly. The visitors made several mistakes in their own danger zone and the Bulldogs capitalised to take a 16-4 lead into half-time, before eventually closing out the match by 12 points.
"We just made some fundamental errors and it cost us in the end," West Belconnen Coach Justin Giteau said. "We made five mistakes coming out of our end zone and they turned all of them into points.
"We just made some ridiculous mistakes and they made the most of their opportunities."
Goulburn Workers Bulldogs 28 (Michael Bani, Code Medway, Ritchie Mason, Shane McCallum, Ben Picker tries; Picker 4 goals) defeated West Belconnen Warriors 16 (Joe Cramp, Ryan McQueen, Ricky Fulivai, Bobby Roberts tries)