The Newtown Jets have launched into the top four of the Intrust Super Premiership NSW following a convincing 28-10 win over the Newcastle Knights at Henson Park.
Despite missing young stars Kyle Flanagan, Blayke Brailey and Bronson Xerri (in NSW Under 20s camp), Newtown managed to outclass the Knights by five tries to two. Braden Uele was outstanding for the home team, producing a barnstorming front-row performance for the ages.
Match: Jets v Knights
Round 17 -
Venue: Henson Park
The victory backs up the Jets’ 50-24 demolition of Wentworthville last round, continuing their momentum heading into the finals. Meanwhile, the Knights remain in last place.
After a cautious opening from both sides, Newcastle struck first when left winger Thomas Hughes dashed onto a shrewd grubber and touched down centimetres before the dead-ball line. Kurtis Dark added the extras from out wide to provide the visitors an early 6-0 lead.
Newtown enjoyed a raft of penalties in attacking territory and eventually hit back through winger Charlton Schaafhausen. The Jets’ backline showed great sleight of hand down the right edge, giving Schaafhausen the space needed to rumble across the line.
Jesse Marschke couldn’t convert from the sideline, leaving Newcastle in front 6-4.
The Knights were reduced to 12 men following the 10-minute sin-binning of halfback Brock Lamb for a professional foul – and Newtown would make full use of the numerical advantage. Moments later, Nikora charged onto a lovely flat pass and slashed past the defence to score next to the posts.
This time Marschke added the extras, making the score 10-6 in the Blue Bags’ favour.
The Jets began to look extremely dangerous from anywhere on the park – Uele produced a rampaging charge in which he threw off players left and right, and fullback William Kennedy excited the crowd with an electrifying long-range line break.
Soon the attacking theatrics turned into another try, this time to Marschke. The halfback spotted a gap 20 metres out from the line and accelerated through it to touch down under the sticks.
He converted his own try, giving the Jets a commanding 16-6 buffer at half-time.
Kennedy exited the field early in the second-half for a Head Injury Assessment, but it didn’t halt the Newtown express. Uele received just reward for his ruthless efforts, carrying multiple defenders into the in-goal on his way to a try. Marschke converted from beside the uprights.
Next, Jets winger Matthew Evans broke away down the left touchline before linking with Lachlan Stein in support for another fantastic four-pointer. Bessie Aufaga-Toomaga assumed the goal-kicking duties and knocked over the simple attempt.
Newtown then flexed its defensive muscles, repelling the Knights for multiple repeat sets. However, the pressure finally became too much and Newcastle claimed its second try via Hughes after some skillful play from his inside men.
Dark couldn’t convert; the score remaining 28-10 until full-time.
The Jets will look for a third consecutive win when they take on the Bears at North Sydney Oval next weekend, while Newcastle has the bye.