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Devils overcome  Magpies in physical, high-scoring game

Norths Devils kept their unbeaten start to the 2021 Intrust Super Cup season intact, with an impressive 39-22 win over Souths Logan Magpies in Round 4’s XXXX Rivalry Round match.

There was a large crowd assembled at Davies Park to see two star-studded teams, with Anthony Milford and Tesi Niu also featuring for their former club the Magpies.

While the Devils had the better of the contest, the Magpies pushed their opposition until the end in an error-riddled game; and it wasn't until Norths ran in two late tries in the last five minutes of the match that the game was put beyond doubt. 

Danny Levi from Norths Devils tackles Anthony Milford from Souths Logan Magpies. Photo: Colleen Edwards / QRL
Danny Levi from Norths Devils tackles Anthony Milford from Souths Logan Magpies. Photo: Colleen Edwards / QRL

In the lead-up to the game, Souths Logan coach Steven Bretherton had impressed to his side that the Broncos additions this week would not make it an easy match for the team, saying “players shouldn’t think that things are automatically going to happen for us, we still have to do the little things right”.

That proved to be the case, with the Magpies instead registering an disappointing completion rate of 49 per cent for the game.

Norths’ dominance was felt in the opening plays with Brendan Piakura scoring in the second minute.

However, the Magpies hit back with rookie centre Ethan Quai-Ward scoring soon after.

Piakura had an early double, crossing again in the 14th minute, before the Devils went further ahead when Michael Molo crashed over. The successful conversion pushed the Devils lead to 16-4.

Magpies fought back before halftime thanks to a try from Karmichael Hunt with a successful conversion from Isaiah Tass seeing the teams enter the sheds with Norths leading 16-10.

Norths hit the ground running to start the second half and scored back-to-back tries from Bryce Donovan and Rashaun Denny, before a try to Kobe Hetherington who barged over following some strong team play in the lead-up hinted at a Magpies comeback.

Bryce Donovan in action for Norths Devils. Photo: Colleen Edwards / QRL
Bryce Donovan in action for Norths Devils. Photo: Colleen Edwards / QRL

Sensing the pressure, Devils captain Jack Ahearn kicked a one-point field goal to further increase the score margin.

However, it narrowed again when Rory Ferguson put in a great effort to score and again spark up the Davies Park crowd.

With the scoreboard reading 22-29 in favour of Norths, a fierce defensive battle raged between the teams who struggled to maintain possession.

However, “not doing the little things right” ultimately allowed the Devils to capitalise on their opportunities off the back of Magpies errors.

The Magpies came undone in the closing minutes with Jon Reuben and Tony Tumusa scoring two quick-fire tries to seal the match.  

After the game, Bretherton was disappointed with his team’s performance, saying the team needed to stop putting themselves under pressure unnecessarily.

“(We need to) keep building on what we’ve done in the last three weeks around control of the ball, the speed of the game around the ruck and obviously completion to give ourselves more opportunities,” Bretherton said.

Next weekend, Souths Logan Magpies will face the Mackay Cutters at BB Print Stadium.

The undefeated Norths Devils will take on the Northern Pride at Barlow Park, Cairns.