Dolphins secure back-to-back minor premierships

When the final whistle of the 2018 In Safe Hands Cup regular season blew at Dolphin Stadium on Saturday night, it was Redcliffe who stood atop the heap as minor premiers.

The Dolphins, under coach Daniel Green, have claimed back-to-back minor premierships and will now shift their focus to converting that achievement into a third straight grand final appearance.

They wrapped up the minor premiership with a 22-10 win over the defending premiers Valleys, who have bowed out of the race after their sixth straight loss. However, the Diehards fate had been sealed earlier in the day as the Tigers defeated the Seagulls to secure fourth place.

While the Diehards will not be playing finals in 2018, it was fitting to end their season in a grand final replay against the Dolphins.

Redcliffe were first to register points when Valleys' coughed up the ball and allowed Scott Schulte to power to the line for a converted try at the southern end.

While Schulte's try was one of strength, Tony Tumusa would waltz through the defence with a deft fend to increase the lead to 12-0. That would remain the score at halftime.

The Dolphins put one hand on the minor premiership trophy when hooker Tristian Hope scored after the break with the lead stretching to 18-0.

However, the Diehards are not ones to lie down no matter the situation and to their credit they mounted a comeback with back-to-back tries.

The first went to hooker Dalton Phillips after a barnstorming run by Paul Ivan.

The second from the man from Krypton, Stephen Coombe, who continues to put 80 minutes of carnage into every game he plays. Coombe's super human effort to score brought Valleys within eight points.

It would take 'the muscle' of the Redcliffe pack, Jordan Pinnock, to clench the decider as he galloped 25 thunderous metres to take the win and give Redcliffe their second consecutive minor premiership with a 22-10 win.

Elsewhere, the Tigers secured fourth place with a 20-2 victory over the Seagulls while the Panthers defeated the Magpies 24-12.

That win, along with Bayside's loss to Easts saw West Brisbane move into second place and they will take on Redcliffe in the major semi-final at Dolphin Stadium next Saturday night.

The Seagulls will host Easts in an elimination final rematch next week at BMD Kougari Oval while Valleys and the Magpies now bow out of the competition.

Download >> Full Brisbane Rugby League finals schedule (A Grade, Reserve Grade, Under 21)

In Safe Hands Cup Round 20 results

Tigers 20 (Brandon Downey, Harry Pondekas, Jayden Carroll, Heath Wilson tries; Brandon Downey 2 goals) defeated Seagulls 2 (John Te Reo goal)

Dolphins 22 (Tony Tumusa, Tristan Hope, Scott Schulte, Jordan Pinnock tries; Will Partridge 3 goals) defeated Diehards 10 (Stephen Coombe, Dalton Phillips tries; Brett Doherty goal)

Panthers 24 (Troy Swift 2, Jamie Olds, Adam Harris, Namila Davui tries; Kyle Van Klaveren 2 goals) defeated Magpies 12 (Matt Brown, Luke Archer tries; Bernard Mosby 2 goals)

In Safe Hands Cup Ladder   
1. Dolphins  +109  48 
2. Panthers  +49  45 
3. Seagulls  +68  44 
4. Tigers  +95  37 
5. Diehards  -112  34 
6. Magpies  -209  32 

* John Devine is a QRL correspondent covering the BRL A Grade competition

Photo: The Redcliffe Dolphins entered Week 1 of last year's finals series as minor premiers. File Image