NRLWA FTG&P Premiership – Round 07 Recap

By PETER ROWE

 

Under a dark and moody sky at Treeby Oval the Fremantle Roosters dismantled their NRLWA Fuel Go and Play Premiership opponents North Beach Sea Eagles on Saturday afternoon with a statement second half performance that sent a clear message they were back in the race.

 

The 44-22 scoreline came off the back of a solid second half that saw tries from Jesse Day – twice,  Paora Kemp, fullback Tuakana Rangihaeata,  player-coach Delane Edwards and centre Nick Riggs, a half that injured captain Duane Butler described as a “massive” improvement.

 

Photo – Liam Sallur

“When we played Beach in round one, our completion rate was 54% with 22 errors. You don’t win games like that,” Butler said.

 

“Today was much improved, it’s starting to come together. Still lots to do, but a big improvement.”

 

The Roosters had opened the scoring after five minutes when Rangihaeata broke through a big hole on the left edge and they increased their lead six minutes later as Edwards, jumping from lock to fullback, and back again, helped engineer space for Tarin Katu to find similar space on that same edge for another score.

 

Beach, who had come to Treeby full of expectation, were their own worst enemies, coughing up the ball several times before they found the try line through back rower Tyler Moeau.

 

Riggs was on the end of another rampaging break for the Roosters to extend the lead for the home side before Jay Pomarre twisted and turned in the tackle short of the line to eventually reach out to score for the visitors.

 

A slim 14-12 lead at the break gave North Beach hope. They had survived from little possession and a strong Fremantle attack and defended their line for a long period, but were still very much in the game.

 

But within two minutes of the restart Fremantle scored again through Day and it set the tone for the remainder of the game.

Photo – Liam Sallur

The Sea Eagles stayed close with tries from Darius Rogers, exploiting a big gap in the Fremantle defensive line, and winger Pomarre on the hour, but by then the Roosters were in full flight.

 

“A lot of lessons to be learned,” Beach coach Phil Douche said afterwards.

 

“We have some great young talent and I hope they will learn form this game.

 

“We worked hard, but made too many errors and Fremantle deserved their victory.”

 

At South Perth Gus Marshall celebrated his 150th game for Joondalup as the Giants beat South Perth 24-12.

 

The Lions though took first honours with Jarrad Smith diving over to score from close range and with Harry DeBique converting looked solid.

 

But within minutes and with 15 minutes left in the half Marshall set up centre Mitch Haggart to close the gap.

 

Then,  from a scrum, the Giants worked the ball through several pairs of hands for winger Dylan Davies to score in the corner.

 

Haggart showed he is one for the future as he grabbed his second to increase the lead and take the visitors into the sheds at the break in control.

Photo – Karmel Potter-Greem

Much of the second half proved to be an arm wrestle as South Perth went in search of points  but it was the Giants who struck first in the second half as Taurean Sheehan set up hooker River Colman to score next to the post.

 

Marshall added the extras and the Giants held a 14-point lead.

 

Smith returned to the fray in an attempt to revitalise his side as the Lions pushed for points and when Sheehan was sin binned,  Ethan Gourgaud, with help from winger Jordan Tumoana, closed the gap to give the home side hope.

 

The Giants held firm and with Sheehan back on the field, wrapped up the points through another Davis try.

 

“It was a scrappy game to start but once we settled down, cut out our errors and got to work, it came good.” Sheehan said.

 

“Credit to South Perth, they fought hard and made us work for the points. 

 

“In a five-team competition you always have to be aware of what every team is doing. We’ve just won two on the bounce, but if South Perth win a few games, which they are capable of, then it’s all to play for.”

 

South Perth team manager Paul Brown admitted Joondalup were the better side on the day.

 

“We couldn’t complete sets in the first half – at 52 per cent completion, you’re not going to win games,” he said.

 

“Better in the second half with 75 per cent but by then we were playing catchup.”

 

Daniel Green returned for the Lions, and together with Blair Young shone in the forwards, as did young Dela Kanawale in the centres, but it was tough afternoon for the home side.