Warriors' bubble bursts
THE Wattles Warriors bubble burst on Sunday at Herb Steinohrt Oval when they were beaten 28-24 by the Valleys Roosters ending their recent four-week winning streak in A grade.
Co-coach Glen McMillan was happy with his side's performance, but a few second half options that saw possession lost in key field positions cost Wattles dearly.
They came into the match with the scalps of Souths, Newtown, Gatton and Pittsworth hanging from their belt, but Valleys were always going to be a benchmark if Wattles were to seriously consider themselves finals contenders.
The Warriors defence was a high point for much of the game, but the Roosters big men of Eugene Seddon, Clinton Banks, Kim Phoenix and Rihari Peeti soaked up plenty of manpower bringing them to a halt.
The Warriors drew first blood with a 90-metre intercept try against the run of play by winger Dale Dempsey, but Valleys hit back to level the score 6-all after 18 minutes.
Classy halves duo of Robert Woodbridge and Jeff Nielsen laid on a try for fullback Brenden Wilson three minutes later, and while the home side ran in two more touchdowns in response, Wilson won the race to a Woodbridge grubber in under the posts to allow Wattles an 18–16 half time lead.
With 10 minutes remaining, man of the match Seddon took a short scoot down the touchline to score a controversial try in the corner to secure victory.
Pint sized hooker Liam Ross was sensational in defence, grassing Valleys big men with textbook around the ankles tackles.
Back rowers Aaron Scheid and Glen McMillan worked relentlessly across the 80 minutes, while front rower Jason Nightingale played well above his weight in an inspiring performance.
Former British Super League star Tony Duggan played fullback in Wattles 11-10 reserve grade loss, collecting his side's player of the match honours.
Wattles under-18 side lifted in the second half of their 38-16 loss to Valleys after trailing 22-0 at half time.
Front-rowers Carl Gale and Jim Johnston excelled for the Warriors along with hooker Alex Morris.