The Matthews Cup and SG Ball Sharks both enjoyed hard-fought victories in round three matches against the Wests Magpies in recording their first wins of the 2020 season.
After both suffered narrow losses in their only previous outings last weekend, the Matthews Sharks scored twice late to win 18-8, while their SG Ball counterparts were forced to work for it before coming out on top by 30-22.
In the Matthews Cup match the Sharks scored early through winger Harrison Hood, converted from near touch by Siteni Taukamo, however they lost their way somewhat for the remainder of the half against a competitive Magpies outfit.
A Wests try made it 6-all at the break and they would take their first lead of the contest at 8-6 in front with a penalty goal in the early moments of the second period.
Despite facing their first deficit the young Sharks battled away and were rewarded for their efforts when back rower Cruiz Devine ran a beautiful inside line off a Dylan Christensen pass and following the conversion it was 12-8 to the Cronulla side.
With the game and the two competition points on the line, the under-16 Sharks showed plenty of composure and they would seal the win with only five minutes remaining, Tyrell Fakaua on the end of Taukamo cut-off pass to cross wide out.
Taukamo missed the conversion attempt but added a penalty goal with time running out to complete the scoring.
Front rowers Zane Watson and Lachlan Crossle were strong for the Sharks, with Taukamo dangerous at fullback.
In the SG Ball it looked like Sharks by a big margin when three tries in the first 10 minutes had them ahead by 16-0.
The Magpies settled into the game as the Sharks made some unforced errors, with the 16-4 half time scoreline a fair indication of the opening 35-minutes.
The Sharks would push their lead out to 28-4 with tries to hooker Romano Cook and a second for the game to Moses Jones, but the Magpies were far from ready to concede.
Tries in the 42nd, 50th and 59th minutes brought the margin back to just six in sending some shockwaves through the Sharks ranks and giving coach Chris O’Connell a few anxious moments, but the Cronulla team settled and hung on, with a Jordan Samrani penalty goal sealing the eight point win.
The Ball Sharks now move on to a game against he Warriors next week, while the Matthews Cup Sharks take on the Panthers. Both games will be played at PointsBet Stadium on Sunday.
Cruiz Devine, Tyrell Fakaua, Harrison Hood tries, Siteni Taukamo 3 goals
Moses Jones 2, Kade Dykes, Jordan Samrani, Romano Cook tries, Cook 4, Samrani goals
Photos courtesy Steve Montgomery - ourfootyteam.com
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