Rugby League: Mustangs vs Tigers

THE Wingham Tigers were at home to the undefeated Group Three Rugby League competition leaders, Macleay Valley Mustangs.

The Kempsey-based team are enjoying their first season in Group Three, having previously been in Group Two.

Wingham went into the game without several of their regular players, including Ben Welsh who was injured at Old Bar the previous week.

With some excellent kicks and a mountain of possession, the Mustangs scored four tries to race to a 22-0 lead after 20 minutes.

Then Joel Kliendienst scored two tries out wide within five minutes, the second converted by Luke Steel who was playing his 200th grade game for the Tigers.

But just as the home team had worked their way back into the contest trailing 22-10, Macleay Valley scored twice in the final three minutes of the half to lead 34-10 at the break.

The Mustangs added another try early in the second half to lead 38-10.

Five minutes later, Alex Studdert scored in the canteen corner.

Then Macleay Valley scored another try against the run of play to lead 44-14.

Tries to Robert MoiMoi and Tim Watson in the final 10 minutes, both converted by Luke Steel, made the final score 44-26.

The game was marred by several incidents of foul play that saw both Matt and Tim Bridge hospitalised.

Scorers: (Joel Kliendienst 2, Alex Studdert, Robert MoiMoi, Tim Watson tries, Luke Steel 3 goals).

Reserve grade

MACLEAY Valley went into the reserve grade against the Tigers as undefeated competition leaders, and led 4-0 inside the first 10 minutes.

Chris Butler crossed out wide for Wingham and Garyn Burnes added the extra points.

Then Brock Howard scored from dummy half, and the try was converted again by Garyn Burnes for a 12-4 lead.

The Mustangs retaliated five minutes later to trail 12-10.

But Wingham scored twice in the final five minutes of the stanza to Garyn Burnes under the posts, and Tyler Atkins in the corner to lead 22-10 at the break.

That lead was wiped out inside the first 10 minutes of the second stanza with two converted tries to level the scores at 22-22.

Five minutes later, Macleay Valley went ahead with another converted try. Midway through the half Shaun Chapman scored in the corner to trail 28-26.

Brendan Butler then scored in the final 10 minutes, converted by Garyn Burnes. Wingham held on to record a 32-28.

Scorers: (Chris Butler, Garyn Burnes, Tyler Atkins, Shaun Chapman, Brendan Butler tries,Garyn Burnes 4 goals).

Under 18s

THE Tigers under 18s started their game well with tries to Shannon Ellem and Reece Slaven (converted by Ryan Morris) to lead 10-0 after as many minutes.

Another try to Shannon Ellem inside the final 10 minutes made the half time score 14-0.

Ten minutes into the second half, the Mustangs scored under the posts to trail 14-6.

With less than 10 minutes remaining, Reece Slaven scored his second try, converted by Fletcher Lewis for a 20-6 lead. Macleay Valley replied immediately for a 20-10 scoreline.

A late try to Ryan Morris sealed a 24-10 victory.

Scorers: (Shannon Ellem 2, Reece Slaven 2, Ryan Morris tries, Ryan Morris, Fletcher Lewis goals).

League tag

THE Wingham women's league tag led 6-0 at half time after a Rhiannon Fuller try and conversion.

The Mustangs scored midway through the second half to trail 6-4. A try to Sarah Grofos from dummy half a minute before full time sealed the Tigers first ever league tag victory by 10-4.

Scorers: (Rhiannon Fuller, Sarah Grofos tries,Rhiannon Fuller goal).

Next Saturday, the Tigers travel to Tuncurry to play the Forster Tuncurry Hawks in all grades.

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