Despite winter making its first appearance during the round 9 Central Highlands Junior Rugby League competition, the efforts by players across the region were scorching.
Over in the Gemfields, President Dale Bryce said all the kids across the age groups played well. He made particular mention of Oliver Sandilands in the Under 6s who scored his second rugby league try, but most importantly, made his first tackle. “Each week, his confidence grows, and it’s great to see.” Still in the Under 6s, young Matt Bryce, for the second week in a row, scored 5 tries in the game, an impressive effort.
In the Under 10s, older brother Zack Bryce picked up Player of the Match with his impressive performance. “He scored a try, and made a big contribution in defence saving 3 or 4 tries.” In the Under 12s, Travis Oates got the President’s attention with his hard ball running, and defensive efforts.
Ian Morrissey from the Peak Downs Pirates said the Under 14s game was a really tough game. "Neither team took a backward step, and all players across the field muscled up." While the Pirates eventually won the contest, Morrissey said the score didn't really reflect the quality of the game. “Stand out performances from the Pirates’ Mitch Hauff and Kyle Vogler proved hard for the defensive line to handle." Pirates’ Tyler Gounder was also a standout with his accurate goal kicking.
The Emerald Brothers Club Patron's Perpetual shield was up for grabs in the annual Brothers White V Brothers Blue Under 14 match on the weekend, and spokesman, Steve Pyle said Mitch Moriarty from Brothers White was a deserved winner of the shield for his hard running and strong defensive efforts. Brothers White always looked comfortable in the game, and were eventual winners, however Pyle was quick to commend the performance of the Brothers Blue players. “It was a pleasing improvement on their last encounter against Brothers White. Both teams made good breaks, and it was a good close game.” Ethan Bullemore in fullback position for Brothers White was a stand out. “He is solid in defence and a good strong runner of the ball.”
In Clermont, it was a wet cold day for the visitors from Blackwater…just the sort of day made for Rugby League, and the players made the most of it. The best game of the day was the Under 10s. Both the Clermont Bears and the Blackwater Crushers put 100% into the game, and a draw was a fitting result for a quality game. The first half was dominated by the Bears, and they took a narrow 16 – 10 lead into the half time break courtesy of some great tries by Luke Callanan and Bailey Looker. The Crushers however fought back with two tries to one in the second half with the result a 22 all draw. Nash Cameron was the Player of the Match in the game for his hard runs, and determined defence.
Round 10 sees the Clermont Bears host Tigers Green in the Under 6s to 12s, and Tigers in the Under 16s. Brothers Blue will play host to Middlemount, Brothers White to Blackwater, Peak Downs to Tigers Black and Gemfields will play host to Springsure.