Junior champions decided in electric day of league
RUGBY LEAGUE: Saturday saw the conclusion of the Rockhampton and District Junior Rugby League International season, with five very good grand finals decided.
We welcomed back former Rocky Tigers junior Jack Howarth, who now plays in Brisbane and represented Queensland at under-18 level this year, to make presentations in the under-18 game.
Capricorn Coast sides dominated the day, taking out all five grand finals.
The under-13 game was always going to be close. Yeppoon started well and in the fifth minute Rydell Tyrrell crashed over for a 6-0 Seagulls lead.
Tigers started to play some football and in the 13th minute Clancy Hohn kicked ahead and won the race for the ball to tie the game up.
Both teams then traded sets, with no one able to make a mark going into the break.
The second half started the same way as the first ended, with both sides playing it safe. Seagulls made a mistake and the Tigers pounced, with Logan Barclay getting over and the conversion made it 12-6.
After a safe set by the Tigers, a scrum packed inside the Seagulls quarter saw Jett Day take on a blind side and run 70m to score and tie it up again.
With 10 minutes remaining, both sides threw everything at each other - Tigers had one attempt at a field goal that sailed wide - and when the full-time hooter sounding it was locked at 12-all. The game then went into five minutes each way extra time and after the first stanza they were still tied.
The game looked like going into golden point after another missed attempt at a field goal by the Tigers, when with 30 seconds left Levi Sandilands potted a field goal and the Seagulls victory.
Players of the match: Jett Day (Seagulls) and Baylee Meilland (Tigers).
The under-14 game matched the undefeated Cap Coast Brothers against the giant killers Yeppoon and it didn't take long for the Brethren to assert their authority.
Three quick tries to Sam Akiba, Sam Pau and Sebastian Nona in the first 15 minutes had Yeppoon on their heels and it could have been a long day.
Yeppoon fought back and were looking at a 12-0 half-time deficit but they launched a bomb, with Ryan Keating taking the ball on the full and scoring under the posts for a half-time score 12-6.
The second half never really got going, with Cap Coast scoring in the 14th minute to Sam Pau and in the last minute to Jeremy Green and with that Cap Coast continued their undefeated run and back-to-back International Premierships.
Players of the match: Sam Pau (Cap Coast) and Uriah Utai (Yeppoon).
The under-15 grand final was going to see a new premiership-winning team.
Cap Coast came into the game as favourites and it didn't take them long to prove why when Will Larsen crashed over from a pass off the ruck.
Both sides then settled down to playing football but mistakes were cruelling the Knights and after another one Larsen found himself with an early double, giving Cap Coast a 12-0 lead.
This got the Knights going and they started to hold the ball and tighten their defence. The Knights introduced Preston Richards into the game and his impact was felt when he broke away from dummy half and scored to take it to 12-6 in the 25th minute.
Then on the next set Richards assisted Spencer Smallcombe over the try line and headed into the sheds at 12-all.
The second half was all Cap Coast - they scored a soft try in the second minute through Owen Pattie and in the 5th minute to Mackenzie Brinkley-Peet and finished off the game when Ryan Welsh scored a good try for a final 26-12 score.
Players of the match: Will Larsen (Cap Coast) and Spencer Smallcombe (Norths).
The under-16 grand final was entertaining, with outstanding ball skills from both sides.
Cap Coast started well when Samson Dau scored in the fourth minute. Seagulls worked their way back into the game when smart half Michael Reddiex scored to level up the game in the ninth minute.
Errors stopped further scoring until the 20th minute when Cap Coast half Javan Mosby broke through from halfway and scored for a 10-4 lead.
On the stroke of half-time winger Samson Dau scored a long-range try and Cap Coast went into the break 16-4.
Yeppoon had the perfect start in the second half when big front-rower Thomas Fox crashed over and Yeppoon were back at 16-10.
Both sides continued to pressure each other but when Harry Gray took a short pass off Grady Callaghan, Cap Coast were back to a 10-point lead. Shortly after, Kongasau Nona scored again for the Brethren and a 26-10 lead with 18 minutes to go and they looked like running away with the match but Yeppoon stayed strong and were rewarded with a late try to Ben Charles. Cap Coast took the match 26-14.
Players of the match: Kongaseau Nona (Cap Coast) and Ben Charles (Yeppoon).
The last game of the day was the under-18 Yeppoon Seagulls taking on Brothers Blue. If the Brethren were to win this game they needed to start well and even though they held the Seagulls early, the Yeppoon side started to take control.
It was the ninth minute when big Liam Kenny barged over for a 6-0 lead. Ten minutes later Isaac Garraway scored and took it to 12-0.
Bailey Sims was injected into the game and had immediate effect, diving over close to the post and giving the Seagulls a commanding 18-0 lead.
Brothers kept trying and were rewarded with a smart pass from Thallon Peters to Darcy Hancock and at the break Yeppoon led 18-6.
Fullback Cooper Marshall gave Brothers a chance when he broke the line at halfway and scored to make it 18-10.
Then in the 20th minute Seagulls winger Will Simmons dived over out wide to score and with Jye Marriott keeping his kicking record intact they went out to a 24-10 lead - where it stayed for the rest of the game.
Players of the match: Isaac Garraway (Yeppoon) and Jeremy McLaughlin (Cap Coast).
The RDJRL would like to thank all the players, coaching staff and supporters for another fantastic season. They would also like to thank the Rockhampton Leagues Club for their continued support.
To all the under-18 players leaving this year we wish you well in your future endeavours on and off the field.
GRAND FINAL RESULTS
- Under-13: Yeppoon 13 (tries: Rydell Tyrrell, Jett Day; goals: Jett Day 2; field goal: Levi Sandilands) def Rocky Tigers 12 (tries: Clancy Hohn, Logan Barclay; goals: Isaac Walker 2)
- Under-14: Cap Coast Brothers 22 (tries: Sam Pau 2, Jeremy Green, Sam Akiba, Sebastian Nona; goals: Josh Welsh) def Yeppoon 6 (tries: Ryan Keating; goals: Steven Bounghi)
- Under-15: Cap Coast Brothers 26 (tries: Will Larsen 2, Ryan Welsh, Owen Pattie, Mackenzie Brinkley-Peet; goals: Tyreece Ajmat 3) def Norths 12 (tries: Spencer Smallcombe, Preston Richards; goals: Preston Richards 2)
- Under-16: Cap Coast Brothers 26 (tries: Samson Dau 2, Kongasau Nona, Harry Gray, Javan Mosby; goals: Harry Gray 3) def Yeppoon 14 (tries: Ben Charles, Michael Reddiex, Thomas Fox; goals: Blake Aders)
- Under-18: Yeppoon 24 (tries: Will Simmons, Liam Kenny, Isaac Garraway, Bailey Sims; goals: Jye Marriott 4) def Brothers 10 (tries: Cooper Marshall, Darcy Hancock; goals: Thallon Peters)