Highlights: Jets v Warriors (Rd 21)
The New Zealand Warriors remain locked in a three-way race for the minor premiership with a 30-28 victory over the Newtown Jets.
The Warriors raced out to an 18-point lead after just 11 minutes that forced the Jets to play catch-up football for the entire match.
Mason Lino was instrumental for the Warriors in a game that was hindered by constant stoppages, while Todd Murphy was outstanding in a losing outfit.
The loss for the Jets means they fall out of the top eight and face an uphill battle to feature in the Finals
The Jets made their first error just 20 seconds into the contest, which set the tone for the stop-start affair.
Saula Solomona scored for the Warriors off the following set after a lovely James Bell offload fractured the Jets defence and created an overlap.
The Jets almost hit back immediately, but Tarek El Masri could not handle a Todd Murphy grubber to score a certain try.
The mistake proved to play out as a 12-point turnaround, as Lino sold a massive dummy off the following set to bust through, before the ball was spread left for Solomona to athletically plant the ball down for his second try.
Lino converted from the sideline to make the score 12-0 with an incredibly skillful kick that faded in and around the left upright.
The Jets fell for the dummy again three minutes later after Nathaniel Roache faked to pass, broke through the defensive line and then offloaded for Dominique Peyroux to pick up the ball and give the Warriors a commanding 18-0 lead.
It appeared the Jets were in for a long day but the Murphy-led bluebags never gave up.
Gerard McCallum put in a grubber that seemed to have too much weight on it, but it was athletically batted back into play and pounced on by Tim Robinson to open the Jets’ account.
A Murphy grubber 10 minutes later deflected off a Warriors defender and was picked up by Kurt Kara who planted the ball down to reduce the deficit to 18-12.
Kara bagged his second try six minutes later after he ran on the inside of a Daniel Abou-Sleiman pass to lock up the scores at 18-all.
Lino was injured two minutes into the second half, but played on and made a linebreak just three minutes later to no avail.
The Warriors regained the lead in the 51st minute after Peyroux caught the Jets napping. He bounced off various defenders to score a soft try, which was followed by the kickoff going out on the full.
Two potential hat tricks were then blown in the space of four minutes. Solomona would have had his third if not for an obstruction, while Kara dropped the ball in the act of scoring shortly afterwards.
Sami Sauiluma made an excellent linebreak on the 60-minute mark, before Roache was sent to the sin bin for holding him down in the tackle.
Despite being a man short, the Warriors increased their lead to 30-18 when John Palavi scored an outstanding try where he powered through various Jets defenders in a 40-metre raid.
Corey Brown responded four minutes later by sprinting around the Warriors defence to score an important runaway try for the hosts.
With seven minutes remaining, Murphy put in a cross-field kick for Corin Smith to score but missed the important conversion that would have locked up the scores.
The Jets had two try scoring opportunities in the dying minutes but failed to convert, which resulted in the Warriors being two-point victors.
Warriors 30 (S Solomona 2, D Peyroux 2, J Palavi tries; M Lino 5 goals) bt Newtown Jets 28 (K Kara 2, Tim Robinson, C Brown, C Smith tries; T Murphy 4 goals)