Norths Tigers defeated West End Bulldogs 42-24 on Sunday at Daniel’s Park to secure second-place in the Ipswich Rugby League Mayor Paul Pisasale A-Grade Cup.
Norths came up against a committed Bulldogs team who were hoping to end their season on a high.
The match was a good hit-out for the Tigers who showed that they will be a genuine title-threat when the finals series rolls around.
Norths led 18-0 after just 17 minutes after two tries to Joshua Roberts and one try to Tonga Mounga.
In the first 20 minutes of the match everything seemed to be clicking for the Tigers, their forwards were rolling forward, their halves steered the team around the field and Tonga Mounga and Anava Fesolai showed consistent brilliance on Norths’ right-edge.
After the 20-minute mark West End began to show some attacking brilliance of its own.
West End fullback Brook Alofipo started to find space in the Norths defensive line, opening the Tigers up on numerous occasions.
In the 24th minute West End looked like they would be starting a new set on their own try-line only for Alofipo to gather the ball and run deep into Norths’ half leading to a stunning try to Bulldogs lock Jacob Sinn.
Trailing 28-8 at halftime West End looked eager to get off to a good start in the second-half.
When the Bulldogs kicked-off the second-half, Norths were forced into a goal-line drop-out when the ball bounced over their dead-ball-line.
In the next set Bulldogs prop John Ward barged over to score, reducing the Tigers’ lead to 28-14.
A try to West End’s Samson Hookey in the 47th minute cut Norths’ lead to 10-points and it looked like a Bulldogs comeback was on.
Both teams scored in the following 10 minutes to take the score to 34-24.
When Norths winger Matthew Fairhurst scored in the 70th minute to extend Norths’ lead to 38-24 the game looked out of reach for West End.
In the 77th minute Norths sealed the win when Tigers prop Mark Appleton scored his second try of the game giving Norths a 42-24 win.
The final standing of the 2014 Ipswich Rugby League Mayor Paul Pisasale A-Grade Cup ladder is; 1. Brothers, 2. Norths Tigers, 3. Goodna Eagles, 4. Fassifern Bombers, 5. Swifts Bluebirds, 6. West End Bulldogs.
Brothers, Norths, Goodna and Fassifern all progress to the finals series.