The North Queensland Gold Stars have wrapped up third place on the BHP Premiership ladder with a nail-biting 22-18 win over West Brisbane Panthers at BB Print Stadium in Mackay.
A brilliant solo try by Gold Stars halfback Tahlulah Tillett in the dying stages of the BHP Indigenous Round match broke an 18-18 deadlock and gave North Queensland their fifth win of the season.
Edge forward Rangimarie Edwards-Bruce got the home side on the board in the eighth minute courtesy of a short ball from lock Pani Rupapere.
The lead didn’t last long though, with the Panthers taking advantage of a 12-woman Gold Stars line, scoring tries through Therese Aiton and Montanah Best.
With a full compliment of players back on the field, North Queensland took advantage of a strong breeze at their backs, scoring a pair of tries inside five minutes to go into the break up 14-12.
Match: Stars v Panthers
Round 7 -
Venue: BB Print Stadium, Mackay
With each side trading a try midway through the second stanza, the match looked to be headed for a draw before Tillet’s chip-and-chase sealed a Gold Stars victory.
North Queensland will travel to the Burleigh Bears in week one of the finals series and the undefeated Valleys will play host to the Panthers.