The Wynnum Manly Seagulls registered their first win of the BRL In Safe Hands Cup with a hard-fought 34-18 effort against the Redcliffe Dolphins, while Souths registered their first win to come from 12-6 down to defeat defending premiers Valleys 28-12,
After starting the season poorly with a Round 1 loss to Wests, the Seagulls learnt from their mistakes to come away with the three points; but it wasn’t easy.
Despite controlling field position for much of the first half, they only managed to lead by two at the break. However, improved handling led to a big second stanza where they pulled away to claim victory.
“We didn’t really control the footy in that first half, we turned it over too much,” Seagulls coach Ron Troutman said. “I was very happy with the second half with just the one error.
“At halftime I asked the boys to win the ruck whether we had the ball or we were defending. Once we ticked those boxers, we were in the game.”
The Seagulls had plenty of chances in the opening 25 minutes, but only managed to convert that into a single Kelly Tate try.
The movement started with a Jon Te Reo offload and ended with a grubber kick from halfback Ben Jackson. The kick rebounded off the leg of Dolphins fullback Trai Fuller for Tate to simply pick up the ball and place it over the chalk.
Redcliffe hit back and got on the scoreboard in the 25th minute after Fuller busted some moves to weave through the Seagulls defence from 35m out, then ran away and touched down under the cross bar.
Minutes later, Fuller struck again, crossing over out wide on the left side. This time a lovely pirouette out of a tackle gave him the space to motor the remaining 10 metres and score, giving Redcliffe a 10-6 lead.
Three minutes from the break and the Seagulls found themselves back in attacking territory, with the biggest of units, Tamati Ioane, charging onto the football, crossing untouched under the posts to give the Seagulls a 12-10 lead at halftime.
Redcliffe scored first after the break to retake the lead after quick hands from 10m out saw second rower Brett Anderson cross.
But it was Wynnum who would take control of the game, charging to a 22-14 lead thanks to the kicking game of Ben Jackson.
Two pin point kicks led to tries for both Jacob Tonge and Matt Milson while Keenan Palasia crossed in the 65th minute to extend the lead even further as the gas used by the Dolphins to defend in the opening 25 minutes began to take its toll.
Hooker Mitch Moore capitalised on the tiring Redcliffe pack and scooted through after a Steadman Lefau offload, before sending support player Matt Milson over for his second of the day.
Redcliffe winger Curtis Johnson is a regular name fetured in the try scorers column and Sunday night would prove no different with a late try, but the Seagulls had already done enough to take the contest 34-18.
In the other Round 2 game, West Brisbane Panthers kept the Easts Tigers winless with a 30-22 victory.
BRL In Safe Hands Cup Round 2 Results
Panthers 30 (Sonny Munroe 2, James Olds 2, Michael Molo tries; Kyle Van Klaveren 5 goals) def Tigers 22 (Brett Kelly, Ollie Olds, Joe Bond, Heath Wilson tries, Joe Bond 3 goals)
Magpies 28 (Dan Russell 2, Benaiah Bowie, Brad Frith tries; Brad Frith 6 goals) def Diehards 12 (Haydan Lipp 2 tries; Hayden Lipp 2 goals)
Seagulls 34 (Matt Milson 2, Jacob Tonge, Keenan Palasia, Kelly Tate, Tamati Ioane tries; Ben Jackson 5 goals defeated Dolphins 18 (Trai Fuller 2, Brett Anderson, Curtis Johnston tries, Reece Braun goal)
* John Devine is the BRL A Grade correspondent for the QRL