ICY: Oberon Tigers’ Brenton Gibson makes a break for it in the loss to Orange Hawks.ICY cold wind and muddy conditionsmeant it was hard goingfor the Oberon Tigers on Sundaywhen they met Orange Hawks inthe latest round of the Group 10premier league competition.
In a hard-fought affair, it wasthe resurgent Hawks who cameaway with a 16-8 win, theOrange outfit punishing lateOberon errors.
The Tigers had been a realchance to take the much-neededcompetition points as thegame entered the final 10 minutes,but were unable to hold offthe Hawks.
The result means the Tigershave won just two games so farthis season, with seven lossesand a draw making it one oftheir toughest periods this season.
As has been the case so manytimes this season, the final quarterof the match cruelled Oberonafter they had been competitiveup until that point. It is somethingcoach Scott Traynor islooking to rectify immediately.
In the first half neither sidescould really be separated,despite the higher completionrate and possession to the visitingteam. It was just the one fourpointer to Hawks’ centreLawrence Fogg as he foundsome space out wide to score.
With the conversion unsuccessful,the Hawks spent plentyof time in Oberon’s half in the first 40 but couldn’t land thepoints, thanks to the hardworkingTigers’ defence. At the half,there was nothing in it at 4-0Hawks’ way.
The second half broughtsome new found vigour in theTigers’ attack. Oberon half SteveLane exploited the Hawks’ outside backs, peppering them withkicks and testing the back threeof Orange with high bombs andtowering kicks in the treacherousconditions, and it was only amatter of time until it paid off.
Sixteen minutes in, ReeceFinlay pounced on a drop ballfrom Hawks’ fullback JoeLasagivbav to score and tie it upat four apiece.
From the ensuing kick-off,the Tigers were building pressureand looking the far moredominant side. Seven minuteslater Finlay was at it again, forcinghis way over to put the Tigersin front for the first time in thematch at 8-4.
Oberon nearly made it a possibleeight or 10-point lead severalminutes later after anotherkick was put down from theOrange Hawks, but the conditionsmade it tough for the flyingcentre to scoop on the ball andit slipped from his grasp.
Despite the raids from theTigers, Orange were able to build offsome penalties and back-to- backsets in the final 10 minutes. A stabbinggrubber kick under the postsfrom Orange Hawks brought greatfortune, as they were able to get firstplant on the ball, with second rowerTravis Bubb claiming a try.
After the conversion, Orange stoleback the lead at 10-8. With only minutesremaining, Orange were able todominate possession and close outthe match after some luck of theirown and a cross field kick to fullbackLasagivbav, who ran around theOberon defence to score. That sealedthe deal for last season’s grand finalistsand minor premiers, taking thematch 16 points to eight.
It’s been a tough couple of monthsfor Traynor’s boys, who are lookingfor that elusive win to kick-start somemomentum and confidence withinthe group. This Sunday the boys willtackle the Cowra Magpies at home.
Under 16s kick off at 10.30am, girlsleague tag 11.30am, first division12.30pm and premier league 2pm.
HAWKS 16 Tries J LASAGIVBAV, LFOGG, T BUBB. Goals B McGARITY2/3 defeated OBERON 8 Tries RFINLAY 2.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.