HIGHLIGHTS: Bears v Sea Eagles (Rd 8)
The Manly Sea Eagles made it two wins in a row with an impressive 38-22 victory over their old rivals, the North Sydney Bears.
A double to Sea Eagles back-rower Black Leary, as well as strong performances by Dylan Kelly and Kurt Aldridge ensured a solid victory over the fast-finishing Bears.
The first half saw vigorous aggression and determination in defence by both sides, whilst the second half saw 38 points scored.
The Bears were the first to score in the 7th minute when Cody Walker put in a perfect chip kick to an unmarked Sam Manuleleua, who caught the ball and planted it down with ease. Darren Nicholls converted the try to make it 6-0
Sea Eagles fullback Dom Reardon leveled the scores in the 13th minute when he burst through the defence and skipped around multiple Bears defenders to score a wonderful try. Aldridge converted to make it 6-all.
After a midfield scuffle 20 minutes into the contest, the Bears were in again when Walker threw a skillful offload to Manuleleua who scored his second try of the afternoon.
Kelly forced a drop out in the 27th minute, and off the following set he stepped off his right foot to score another Sea Eagles try. Aldridge converted and the Sea Eagles led for the first time.
The defensive aggression became increasingly evident when Manaia Rudolph was hit hard after a kick and was down injured momentarily. Two minutes later, Kelly received the same treatment whilst attempting a kick, and a fight broke out.
The final five minutes of the first half saw some determined Bears defence, who were faced with multiple Sea Eagles repeat sets until the half time siren. The defence did not crack, and the score remained 12-10 at half time.
That inspirational defensive effort came undone just three minutes into the second half when Michael Chee Kam pushed his way through some lazy defence and eventually got the ball down. Aldridge converted to extend the lead to 18-10.
Five minutes later, Leary pounced on a loose ball that was grubbered into the in-goal area to make the score 24-10 after Aldridge converted the try.
The Bears ignited in the second half as John Olive showed speed to score in the 53rd minute off the back of some superb second phase play. Nicholls converted to make it 24-16.
In the 61st minute, Nicholls burst onto a Walker pass and scored a wonderful Bears try that came off the back of a great run by Olive. Nicholls converted his own try to bring it back to 24-22.
The Sea Eagles successfully kicked a penalty goal to extend their lead to four points in the 67th minute.
Leary registered his second try of the day just two minutes later after a Todd Wilson offload. Aldridge once again converted to make it 32-22 to the Sea Eagles.
Tony Satini scored a runaway try off the following kickoff set which denied any opportunity of a miracle Bears comeback. Aldridge completed his perfect goal kicking record of seven goals from seven attempts.
It was a good win for the Sea Eagles side, who have done well in their last two games to overcome a slow start to the season.
The Sea Eagles will play their next game against the New Zealand Warriors on the 9th of May at Henson Park, whilst the Bears will travel up to Hunter Stadium on the 10th of May to face the Newcastle Knights.
Manly Sea Eagles 38 (B Leary 2, D Reardon, T Satini, D Kelly, M Chee Kam tries; K Aldridge 7 goals) bt North Sydney Bears 22 (S Manuleleua 2, J Olive, D Nicholls tries; Nicholls 3 goals)