The Canterbury Bulldogs recovered from last week’s 40-point loss to the Mounties with an impressive 26-24 victory over the Newtown Jets.
The Bulldogs got off to a flying start as they scored 18 points in as many minutes, and their right-winger Tautalatasi Tasi bagged a hatrick before the half time break.
Tasi scored the first of his three tries in the seventh minute of the game after Bulldogs halfback Dane Chisholm threw a nice cutout pass for him put the ball down in the right corner. Levi Dodd converted from the sideline to make it 6-0.
The Bulldogs scored again two minutes later when Shaun Lane was on the receiving end of a wonderful pass by Matt Frawley and found his way to the try line to make it 12-0.
The Bulldogs were on the attack for most of the opening quarter of the game, constantly forcing dropouts and limiting the Jets opportunities with the ball.
Bulldogs fullback Jaline Graham made an excellent 60-metre line break in the 17th minute resulting in Tasi’s second try of the afternoon after he athletically planted the ball down in the corner.
It seemed the Bulldogs were going to run away with the game as they led 18-0 and had completely dominated the Jets in every part of the opening 25 minutes.
Then out of nowhere, fullback Nathan Gardner flew through the Bulldogs defence and got the Jets on the board for the first time.
The Jets were in again three minutes later when Corey Brown scored in the left corner cutting the deficit to 18-10.
The Bulldogs kicked the ball out on the full off the following kickoff giving the Jets immediate field position.
The Jets capitalised on the Bulldogs’ crucial kickoff error as Ray Moujalli powered his way over the line to trail 18-16.
The Bulldogs responded to the Jets’ scoring run of 16 straight points in the 37th minute when Chisholm threw an amazing pass for Tasi who again athletically planted the ball down in the corner and completed his well-earned hatrick.
Dodd missed the conversion and the score was 22-16 going into the halftime break.
It was disappointing for the Bulldogs to allow the Jets back from an 18-point deficit, and this disappointment was expounded when they conceded the first try of the second half.
Todd Murphy threw a pass to Nesiasi Mataitonga six minutes into the half, and Gardner locked up the scores to 22-all with a conversion from the sideline.
The Jets hit the front for the first time in the 56th minute when they received a high tackle penalty in front of the posts for a 24-22 lead.
This lead was short lived as 10 minutes later Dodd broke away after receiving a lovely offload and scored what was the match-winning try in the final 26-24 scoreline.
The Jets will play the Wentworthville Magpies at Ringrose Park next week, whereas the Bulldogs have a bye before they will face Mt Pritchard Mounties in two weeks time at Belmore Sports Ground.
Canterbury Bulldogs 26 (T Tasi 3, L Dodd, S Lane tries; Dodd 3 goals) def. Newtown Jets 24 (N Gardner, C Brown, N Mataitonga, R Moujalli tries; Gardner 4 goals)