Debique the hero after the siren

Credit: South Perth Lions

Harry Debique kicked a conversion after the siren to hand the South Perth Lions a dramatic 32-30 win over the Rockingham Sharks during Round 13 of the WA Smarter Than Smoking Premiership on Saturday.

Trailing 30-26 heading into the last minute, Bruce Anderson powered his way over to tie the game up before Debique slotted his kick to send the visiting Lions home happy.

The win snapped a two-game losing streak for South Perth and moves them a game clear of Rockingham on 14 points.

“It was good just to get that win back on the board and to do so in the dying seconds was pretty impressive,” South Perth coach Hayden Fisher said.

“I couldn’t actually watch (the kick). I was confident he was going to get one over and am just glad the boys got the win.”

The Sharks have now lost three games in a row and will drop out of the top four if they lose to the Joondalup Giants next weekend.

In windy conditions, points were always going to be a premium, and it was the Lions who got on the board first when Kade McDonald touched down for his 11th try of the season after 11 minutes.

The Sharks had conceded 110 points in their last two games before this contest and hit back immediately – fullback Logan Barclay crossing to tie the game up.

Karl Harding’s darting run from dummy half restored the visitors’ lead before Rockingham five-eight Kieren Crowe responded just four minutes later with a try of his own.

Jack Wray added the extras to give the Sharks a slender 10-8 lead after half an hour.

With both sides cancelling each other out in a back and forth contest, the Sharks bucked the trend and scored back-to-back tries when Josh Jerome barraged over from close range to give his side a 16-8 lead heading into the sheds.

Whatever Fisher said to his troops at the break had the desired effect, with South Perth rattling off 18 unanswered points after tries to Debique, Jake Baker and Harding’s second.

With South Perth now up by two sores, Rockingham had to be the next to score and they were as Jerome’s kick fortuitously ended up in the arms of winger Tom Halliday who streaked away to score.

The try kicked Rockingham into life, and the hosts soon found themselves ahead after Jayden Toelupe bundled his way over before Ezra Taomia got on the end of Jerome’s hopeful kick to give his side a 30-26 lead with just three minutes remaining.

The game would end in heartbreak for the Sharks, however, as Anderson forced his way over in the dying stages to lock the scores up at 30-30 before Debique stole the points with a cooly converted kick.

In other games around the grounds, the North Beach Sea Eagles produced a strong second-half comeback to down Joondalup 32-16, while the Fremantle Roosters ensured the Willagee Bears remain winless in 2018 with a comfortable victory.