Jets Thump Mounties to Book Panthers Showdown
Newtown Jets have sounded out a warning to the remaining teams in the Intrust Super Premiership Finals Series, thumping Mounties 34-16 in the sides' Semi-Final match-up to book a Week Three clash with the Penrith Panthers.
Match: Jets v Mounties
Finals Week 2 -
Venue: Jubilee Oval
Returning from their Week One Qualifying Final loss to the St. George Illawarra Dragons, the Jets showed they remain a premiership threat by disposing with the Mounties – the effort sure to have rival clubs wary of Newtown's attacking prowess in the weeks to come.
In the five-tries-to-three clash, Mounties posted first points courtesy of a Sitiveni Moceidreke penalty goal.
But it would be the Jets to strike the first blow in the form of a try.
Running with the speed and energy that has been a feature of their game throughout all of 2018, Newtown worked the ball in to an attacking zone and Kyle Flanagan's deft pass at the try-line sent Briton Nikora in for a try in the 13th minute.
Flanagan converted from to the right of the uprights, taking the Jets to a 6-2 lead.
On the back of sustained pressure, Newtown soon after had their second four-pointer, courtesy of backrower Billy Magoulias.
In a familiar set-up shape, crafty No.9 Blayke Brailey rolled the ball into the in-goal with a grubbing kick, and it was weighted perfectly for Magoulias' trailing run.
Again, Flanagan made no mistake from the kicking tee and the Jets led 12-2, 25 minutes played.
Newtown continued their first-half roll-on, crossing for their third try a Flanagan combined with fullback Will Kennedy to score.
Mounties' defence had no answer to Flanagan's last tackle run, and the halfback sent Kennedy through a yawning gap to score his fourth try in as many weeks.
Flanagan's conversion from in front of the uprights extended the Newtown lead to 16 points, and so it remained at the end of the first 40 minutes, as the sides returned to the sheds with an 18-2 scoreline.
At the change of ends, Newtown quickly opted for a gift two points from a penalty conversion and took the lead to three converted tries.
Mounties' afternoon went from bad to worse when Sione Katoa finished off a set play from the scrum base to continue the flow of points.
Flanagan maintained his perfect afternoon with the boot, 50 minutes played, taking the score to 26-2 with half an hour still to play.
The scoreboard attendant continued to earn their keep as the Jets ran in more points – their fifth try of the afternoon – as interchange prop Wes Lolo stormed his way over from close range.
Mounties' goal-line defence offered little resistance to Lolo's hulking figure, and the Jets' lead was stretched to 30 points as Flanagan again raised the touch judges' flags.
A consolation effort added respectability to the scoreline, as Tony Satini collected an overhead pass from Tyler Cornish to run in Mounties' first try of the afternoon.
Newtown's defence clocked off again as time ticked away, and Makahesi Makatoa was the beneficiary, going in for a try. Taane Milne did the same just minutes later, lessening Mounties' deficit further.
But 34-16 the scoreboard read as Moceidreke's conversion attempt was waved away, and so it would remain at full-time.