Highlights: Bulldogs v Magpies (Rd 14)
Wentworthville Magpies won their fourth game of the season with a strong 16-4 win over the Canterbury Bulldogs.
Magpies completely dominated the entire game in terms of field position and possession, however they made it hard for themselves with poor first-half execution.
Bulldogs carried a three-game winning streak into the match, however they never looked like winning due to extremely limited attacking opportunities and a very poor completion rate.
The entire first half was played down the Bulldogs end, however the Magpies struggled to capitalise their opportunities into points.
It took 15 minutes for the Magpies to get any sort of result with Adam Quinlan putting in a classy grubber to force a dropout. Off the next set, Beau Henry forced another dropout before the Bulldogs put in a short kick and re-gathered in what was an amazing piece of play and relieved the pressure.
The 22nd minute saw the Bulldogs tackled in the Magpies 40-metre zone for the first time, highlighting the Wenty dominance.
The Magpies finally got on the board in the 38th minute when Moses Manu made a powerful linebreak and threw a wonderful offload for Quinlan who ran away to score.
This was the only score of the first half, which meant the Bulldogs were only down 6-0 going into the break.
Henry increased the Magpies’ lead nine minutes into the second half off the back of a costly Bulldogs first-tackle error. Cody Nelson slotted an outstanding sideline conversion to increase the lead to 12-0.
The next 10 minutes saw the Bulldogs struggle to complete a set, repeatedly conceding unnecessary penalties.
They gave away a penalty in front of the posts 20 metres out, so the Magpies decided to go for what seemed to be a simple penalty goal. Nelson, who was confident after his last conversion, missed after hitting the upright.
This error did not prove to be costly, as Henry threw a wonderful cutout pass to Jake Butler-Fleming to score in the right corner just three minutes later and extend the lead to 16-0.
Tyrone Phillips put the Bulldogs on the board for the first time in the 68th minute after he was on the receiving end of an excellent pass and finished perfectly in the right-hand corner.
The Bulldogs never gave up in effort, trying various trick plays such as chip kicks and kicking to touch for an optional restart.
Overall, it was a poor game in terms of attack as the Magpies lacked execution and the Bulldogs were sloppy with errors.
The Bulldogs can take their first-half goal-line defensive effort out of this game as a positive, withstanding repeat sets until the stroke of half time.
The Magpies will be relieved to claim the two points and lift from the bottom of the table.
The Magpies will take on Mounties next week at GIO Stadium. The Bulldogs get the week off with a bye before facing the Illawarra Cutters in two weeks time at WIN Stadium.
Wentworthville Magpies 16 (A Quinlan, B Henry, J Butler-Fleming tries; C Nelson, B Henry goals) bt Canterbury Bulldogs 4 (T Phillips try)