Redcliffe celebrates stunning turnaround win over Seagulls
Redcliffe has fought back from a 10-point deficit at the start of the second half to record its first win of the Intrust Super Cup season, 36-20 over Wynnum Manly at BMD Kougari Oval.
The Dolphins were staring down the barrel at 8-18 behind in the 47th minute, but capitalised on some stunning concentration lapses from the Seagulls to notch a comprehensive score at the final hooter and claim the first of two encounters of their traditional Herald Cup contest.
Wearing jumper 22, Brisbane Broncos youngster Kotoni Staggs (pictured) was a standout, running great lines for two early tries and slotting four conversions in the XXXX Rivalry Round clash.
Fullback Tony Tumusa, formerly of the Melbourne Storm development system, was also a shining light from start to finish and one of few Dolphins that fired in a worrying first half.
Wynnum looked like running away with the contest at one stage, with their size, power and orchestration leaving the red-and-whites seemingly flat-footed.
Half Michael Dobson was calling the play with expertise early on, leading to two overlap tries to prolific winger Daniel Ogden.
However, Dobson was one of several players caught out in defence in the second stanza, as Redcliffe exploited some looseness behind the ruck with targeted running and changes in direction.
A try to Dolphins interchange forward Tom Geraghty in the 58th minute was the turning point, turning inside to a handful of tacklers who failed to move up on the opposite side of the ruck and catching them slacking off.
His four-pointer made the score 18-18 and, aside from a Shaun Nona penalty goal, Wynnum Manly were railroaded for the remainder of the game.
Despite the one-way nature of the last 20 minutes, there were still several talking points.
Jonus Pearson scored a spectacular ‘Superman’ try while being bundled into touch in the act of crossing the tryline in the 66th minute.
Then Wynnum prop Max Elliott was placed on report for an allegation of biting Redcliffe replacement hooker Hugh Pratt.
As the seconds counted down, seemingly from nothing Redcliffe centre Jake Sparey broke through some tired defence for a final minute try that summed up the mixed fortunes of the afternoon.
Next week Redcliffe hosts Townsville at Dolphin Stadium, 6pm on Saturday night, while Wynnum Manly will play Norths at 4pm Sunday at Suncorp Stadium as the curtain-raiser to the Broncos v Titans match.
REDCLIFFE 36 (Kotoni Staggs 2, Tony Tumusa, Tom Geraghty, Jonus Pearson, Cameron Cullen, Jake Sparey tries; Kotoni Staggs 4 goals) def WYNNUM MANLY 20 (Daniel Ogden 2, Patrick Carrigan tries; Shaun Nona 4 goals) at BMD Kougari Oval