Mounties have played out a dramatic 26 all draw with the fast improving North Sydney Bears on Saturday at Aubrey Keech Reserve to hold down second place on the VB NSW Cup ladder after round 14.
With 4 players on debut for Mounties in NSW Cup the team was a little disjointed to commence the game and the Bears took advantage posting the opening try in the 5th minute after Josh McCrone failed to find touch from a penalty and led 6-0.
In the 9th minute a terrible read in defense on Mounties right edge saw the Bears open up the home team with Joel Reddy on hand to pick up another four pointer and Mounties trailed 10-0 after 10 minutes.
Mounties then settled and Glen Buttriss was able to stamp his class on the match when he moved the team downfield with some incisive darts from dummy half and in the 13th minute it was Buttriss who delivered a nice cutout ball close to the line for Tevita Pangai Jnr to crash over near the posts to make it 10-6.
Play then went end to end with Mounties enjoying some much needed possession and in the 28th minute Jeremy Hawkins used his speed and strength to attract two defenders before neatly popping a flick pass out to Sam Aiga to dived over out wide to record a try on debut for Mounties to take the lead 12-10.
Several minutes later it was Buttriss again in the thick of the action when he laid on a nice move for Josh McCrone who broke the line and found Buttriss backing up inside to go over and extend the lead to 18-10 with Cornish's boot on song.
Just as the half time bell was approaching Mounties received a much needed penalty and with only two minutes left on the clock McCrone found Jeremy Hawkins in a hole and he was able to get to the line and score out wide however the goal from Cornish was just off the mark and at the break Mounties led 22-10.
The first 20 minutes of the second half was a good old fashioned arm wrestle with both teams desperate in defense with attacking chances coming thick and fast however it was the Bears who grabbed the opening points when Cody Walker crossed for a try and converted to make it 22-16 in favour of Mounties.
In the 67th minute Mounties played some great footy to push the ball from one side of the field to the other and in the end it was another debutant in Jarrad Brackenhofer who was able to grab the last pass and barge over out wide to extend Mounties lead to 26-16.
The Bears were'nt finished though and with four minuted remaining Scott Sorenson scored next to the posts to make it 26-22 and set up a tense finish for the home team.
From the restart of play the Bears were awarded a penalty on their 30m line and from the tap appeared to lose the ball into the tackler however play was waved on and from the next play they threw the ball around before finally crossing in the corner to score the equalizer to make it 26 all. Fortunately for Mounties the conversion was waived away.
Then came the most hectic end to a game ever. With just seconds on the clock Mounties tried a short kickoff which was taken by Norths and they threw the ball around trying to find an opening before spilling it with Mounties picking it up.
Mounties then tried their hand passing through several sets of hands before they turned over possession and Norths regathered and spread the ball wide.
With the full time bell a memory Norths got the ball into the centre of the ground and tried a field goal but it was smothered by Mounties who picked it up and tried to find their own way through the line before the ball was eventually trapped and the game concluded with a draw.
Next week, Mounties take on Wenty at GIO Stadium in Canberra with the game broadcast live on FOX Sports from 12:30pm.