In one of the strongest rivalries in the Hostplus Cup, the Tweed Seagulls have out-enthused the Burleigh Bears to claim both their second win of the season and their second win over the Bears in their past 11 encounters.
Despite struggling to score points in their close loss to the Norths Devils last weekend, the Seagulls turned it on early at Pizzey Park, sending the Bears to the sheds at halftime chasing a 24-point lead.
Match: Bears v Seagulls
Round 4 -
Venue: Pizzey Park, Gold Coast
Tweed hooker Brent Woolf left the field in the 22nd minute after dislocating his shoulder whilst scoring the second try of the match for the away side.
Woolf’s replacement Craig Garvey wasted no time in making his presence felt, slicing through the Bears pack and setting up a try for Lindon McGrady in the 29th minute.
The Bears gave glimpses of hope in the second half with Sami Sauiluma crossing for a double as well as Jacob Alick finding his way to the line.
However, some skilful play from Ioane Seiuli and Paul Turner sent Seiuli fighting his way over the line to further extend the Seagulls lead.
Tempers flared late into the second half which saw Tweed fullback Paul Turner sent to the sin bin following a slap to the face of Guy Hamilton.
Seagulls centre Lee Turner was also placed on report for high contact on Taine Tuaupiki, which saw Tuaupiki leave the field for a HIA in the 60th minute.
In the end, the 14-point buffer proved to be too much for the Bears, leaving the Seagulls victorious and walking away with the Ray McCarron trophy at 32-18.
Excellent in defence all season, Seagulls coach Ben Woolf was left happy with his team on both sides of the ball, despite conceding 18 points in the second half.
“I’m happy with how the attack improved today," Woolf said.
"Our defence was good for the most part as well, just a run of possession let us down in the second half."
Providing Paul Turner with some early ball was part of that improved attack as he looked sharp down the edges.
“We did ID that there was some opportunity in attack if we got Paul some early ball and he did a great job,” Woolf said.
Sam Lisone also impressed in his first game for the club in 2022.
“Sam always brings good energy and enthusiasm. He played well today,” Woolf said.
Meanwhile, Bears coach Rick Stone was obviously disappointed with his side's first half performance.
“To the Seagulls' credit they played well, executed really well and pulled us apart a few times," Stone said.
"Our defensive resolve and commitment and desire in the first half was really disappointing.
"We were also probably a little bit impatient when we had the ball and we had a few chances … but in the end they were a lot better than us in the first half ... 24 points in a half is hard work.
"It’s disappointing to come to a big game at home and play like that. I think the boys are a little bit embarrassed to be honest.”