HIGHLIGHTS: Newcastle-Newtown (Rd 2)
By Paul Arandale
It was a home coming to remember for Kurri Kurri junior Nathan Ross who scored twice and set up another at Kurri Kurri Sports Ground on Saturday.
Spectators had little time to get comfortable when local boy Ross darted through a gap to open the scoring.
Newtown looked rattled from the opening exchanges, giving away easy penalties including one for an incorrect play the ball, which invited the Knights into their territory.
Knights halfback Danny Kerr found some space on the edge to run across the tryline almost untouched to give his side a 10-point buffer after 12 minutes.
Kerr converted his try and the feeling was that a cricket score was on the cards, but the Jets finally found some rhythm and showed some promise with fullback Nathan Gardner looking the most dangerous.
Less than 10 minutes out from half-time the Jets got their first points of the afternoon with Kurt Kara crossing near the posts, but the Knights responded three minutes out from the break with Ross igniting an attack 30 out from his own tryline, setting up winger Jake Mamo, and to give his side a 16-6 lead at half-time.
Both teams went try for try in the second period.
Jets halfback Todd Murphy scored followed by Ross, than Gardner scored a brilliant solo try to keep his side within four.
Any chance of a comeback was snuffed out when Mamo scored his second of the afternoon followed by hooker Chad Redman diving underneath some tired defence next to the post.
Although both sides made a few errors, Knights coach Matt Lantry was happy with the overall effort.
“It was a much improve second hit out and it was nice to see our boys respond in the fashion that they did. Last week we were a little disappointing and we learnt some valuable lessons out of that game and we showed that today,”Lantry said.
“We still have some areas to improve but the pleasing thing for me is that we’ve seen an attitude adjustment towards what we had to get done.”
Halfback Danny Kerr added to last weeks tally of 10 points with another 12, but the day belonged to local lad Ross who was in everything from the kick off.
“He played really well (Ross), in his come back to Kurri as he liked to call it. He provides the team with plenty of energy and pops up at the right time and likes to get his hands on the footy.”
This week the Knights play Wyong Roos at Morry Breen Oval in the first derby clash of the year.
Newcastle Knights 32 (Nathan Ross 2, Jake Mamo 2, Danny Kerr & Chad Redman tries. Danny Kerr 4 goals) defeated Newtown Jets 16 (Nathan Gardner, Todd Murphy & Kurt Kara tries, Nathan Gardner 2 goals)