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Magpies record first win of the season over the Bulls

The Yass Magpies have recorded their first win of the season with a 34-16 victory over the Gungahlin Bulls at Walker Park on Saturday afternoon.

Following a tight, competitive contest in the first half, Yass ran away with the win late in the second 40 minutes through a stunning performance from halfback Joshua Fattore who scored two tries in the round four clash.

After a penalty and error riddled opening minutes of the match, another costly knock on from the Magpies coming out of their own end gave Gungahlin the first points of the game. A lovely cut out ball from the Bulls’ halfback put winger Earldric Pehara over untouched on the right hand side in the 16th minute. 

Lucas Thomson had no issue with the conversion, taking Gungahlin out to a 6-0 lead.

A play down the short, right hand side of the field only minutes later from the Magpies gave them the equaliser with Richard Maher breaking through a tackle a metre out from the line and scoring Yass’s first four pointer.

Shaun Davis delivered a piece of brilliance off the boot slotting the conversion from right on the touchline to make 6-all.

Neither side could break the other following the second try of the match with both sides relying on their defence to force the opposition into risky plays. Yass experimented late in the half with a chip and chase but were still unable to score.

On the stroke of halftime the Magpies tried to take a slight lead with a field goal through halfback Joshua Fattore but he was unsuccessful perfectly emphasising both side’s struggle to put the icing on the cake in the first half.

A huge defensive play five minutes into the second half from Gungahlin laid the platform for them to break the deadlock. A slick shift from left to right ended in the hands of Pehara who once again was able to get across and give the Bulls a four-point lead.

In the 53rd minute Yass centre Jordan Macham-Crane went off with a suspected broken collar-bone after stripping the ball and being driven into the ground awkwardly.

But the Magpies immediately lifted their spirits and levelled the game once again through a lucky try to Liam Grame who was able to beat Pehara to grounding the ball. Grame’s grubber into the in-goal on the last tackle didn’t bounce as expected for Pehara and ricocheted off his leg towards Grame.

Davis continued his perfect conversion kicking, taking Yass in front with a 12-10 lead with over 20 minutes remaining.

However their lead didn’t last long with an attempted charge-down from Yass flying off towards the sideline and straight into Gungahlin winger Kurt Perry’s lap. Perry faked a pass in-field to get past the Magpies fullback and ran another 20 metres to score in the left hand corner in the 58th minute.

Thomson made up for his last missed conversion, slotting his third attempt and taking the Bulls out to a 16-12 lead.

In the 63rd minute Fattore came up with some individual brilliance, throwing two dummies to his right and palming off a defender to get to the line. Davis missed the conversion from slightly to the right keeping the score at 16-all with 15 minutes remaining.

Immediately after scoring, Yass forced a goal line dropout and went straight back on the attack. A short crash over play under the sticks was unstoppable for Gungahlin with Shaun Davis taking the Magpies out to their largest lead of the game of six-points after converting his own try.

Two late tries for the Magpies through Kyle Danilczak in the 74th minute and Fattore in the 79th secured Yass their first win of the season and will surely be a huge confidence boost for the struggling side.

The Yass Magpies will look to make it back to back wins when they take on the Tuggeranong Bushrangers back at Walker Park next weekend whereas the Bulls will face the Sharks in Bruce.

Acknowledgement of Country

Canberra Raiders respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.