Match Report by Keisha Preston
A scrappy Raiders under 20’s side has defeated the Queanbeyan Blues 34-12 at Seiffert Oval on Saturday.
The match was riddled with errors from both sides, with the two teams gifting the opposition penalties, but it was the young Raiders that were able to capitalise on their possession.
The Raiders managed to get onto the scoreboard first after a cutout pass from Mitchel Souter sent Leo Thompson cruising over the try line, giving the Raiders a four-point lead.
Neither side was able to execute their plays to find the try line, finishing the first quarter in favour of the Raiders, 4-0.
Jeremiah Simbikin put a grubber in ten out from line which fell into the lap of Blues player Adam Barlow who zipped down the right side of the field before offloading to fullback Matthew Parsons who was caught just shy of the 40-metre line.
The Blues worked their way down the field before a grubber kick from Terry Campese sent Parsons over the line to give the Blues their first points in the game. A successful conversion from Campese saw the Blues jump to a 6-4 lead.
Raiders hit back with a grubber kick from Jordan Williams which rebounded off the goal post and into the hands of Simbikin who pounced over the try line. A successful conversion from Roberts put Raiders back in front, 10-6.
Queanbeyan gained possession and sent the ball wide to Linitoni Fifita who cruised into the in-goal to get the Blues back into the game. A classy kick from Campese tallied up a 12-10 lead heading into half time.
The Raiders Under 20’s came into the third quarter firing, with winger Bringham Moeakiola shooting through a hole in the Blues defence and over the try line, to put Raiders back in the lead. Roberts put the kick over the black dot to bring the score to 16-12.
Not long after, it was Raiders player Josh Thompson that dived over the try line to give his side a comfortable 20-12 lead, followed by a successful conversion from Roberts.
Manase Kaho dropped the ball off the kickoff, giving Blues a shot to get back into the game, ten out from their try line but a sloppy play the ball by Joshua Hitchins gifted the ball back to the Raiders.
Another fumble from the Raiders, on the back of a Campese kick, in the final seconds of the third quarter, meant Blues were back in possession to start the fourth quarter.
It was all the Raiders in the final quarter. Raiders defence proved strong, holding out Fifita on the try line, robbing the Blues of a chance to get back into the game.
Simbikin made a break down the middle of the field before offloading to Raiders winger Rupapera who shot down the remainder of the field to score with a successful conversion from Roberts to top it off.
Mitchel Souter was next to burrow his way over the try line for the Raiders, converting his own try to give his side a 32-12 lead.
Raiders five-eighth Joe Roberts crossed in the 80th minute and converted his try to bring the final score to 38-12.