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Around the Grounds | Junior Reps, Women's Premiership Round Three

The wrap-up of the best action from Round Three of the Harvey Norman NSW Women's Premiership and the NSWRL's junior representative competitions.

Johns Cup Bulldogs open their 2023 account

North Coast Bulldogs have secured their first victory of the season in Round Three of the SLE Andrew Johns Cup, remaining in Semi-finals contention with a 16-8 win against Newcastle-Maitland Knights on Saturday.

An away trip to Cessnock Sportsground was always going to be a tussle for the Dogs, but they managed to score first when five-eighth Rielly Laverty cut back towards the uprights from 10 metres out and evaded a few defenders to plant the ball down. Halves partner Toby Batten added the extras.

Batten produced a try of his own in the 21st minute, stepping off his right and diving over line to give his side a 10-point buffer.

North Coast pushed their lead even further to open the second half, with centre Joseph Bull slicing through the defence from a midfield scrum play to score in the right corner.

The Knights looked to fight back as front-rower Jace Cox crashed over the try-line to shorten the deficit, before the Bulldogs’ Batten kicked a penalty goal to go 12 points ahead.

The home side scored a consolation through centre Ryan Lawrence as the Bulldogs came away with their opening win for 2023.

Click here for more SLE Andrew Johns Cup results.

SG Ball Raiders snatch victory over Sea Eagles

Canberra Raiders have beaten Manly Warringah Sea Eagles 18-14 in Round Three at 4 Pines Park to stay undefeated in the UNE SG Ball Cup.

It’s all the more impressive while having three games on the road to start the year, yet the Green Machine aren’t showing any signs of slowing down.

Sea Eagles centre Koby Douglas opened the scoring for the hosts, running in support of No.6 Latu Fainu to stroll over the line.

The fast start didn’t halt the Raiders though, making their reply in the ninth minute from just over the halfway line. Halfback Jalen Afamasaga took the line on then offloaded inside for centre Siamani Leuluai, who found back-rower Joseph Reddy to finish.

The next points came more than 30 minutes later with Sea Eagles winger Teapo Stoltman crossing the stripe, putting his side 10-6 ahead.

The Raiders were quickly running out of time before they hit back with seven minutes remaining – this time through new recruit at fullback, Chevy Stewart. Five-eighth Keahn Skipps nailed a crucial conversion to lead 12-10.

Skipps added a four-pointer beside the uprights to his tally in the 66th minute, and converted that effort to give Canberra an eight-point advantage in dying moments.

Stoltman provided the Sea Eagles some hope after his second try with a short time left in the match, but the Raiders had ultimately done enough to earn the win.

Click here for more UNE SG Ball Cup results.

Curtain steers Tigers home in one-point classic

We’ve seen this one before. The trusty right boot of Emily Curtain stealing the show to help the Wests Tigers to victory, but on this occasion in a 23-22 Round Three win against South Sydney Rabbitohs in the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership.

The Rabbitohs found a strong lead in the early exchanges with a pair of tries through back-rower Aaliyah Paki and winger Paige Knapp, and one conversion by Makayla Eli for a 10-nil lead.

Tigers No.9 Ebony Prior brought her team back into the contest by pushing through the goal-line defence from dummy-half. Curtain converted from close range to decrease the margin back to four.

Curtain then took the game into her own hands, scoring a double and converting twice just before halftime, giving the Tigers an 18-10 lead at the break.

The second half saw the Rabbitohs retake the lead, scoring two more tries courtesy of No.18 Charlette Butler (39th minute) and winger Tasmin Barber (53rd). Eli added the two conversions as the visitors led 22-18.

But with 10 minutes left it was Prior who scored her second and levelled the scores. Fast forward to the final minute of play, where Curtain caught the football from 20 metres out and made no mistake with the match-winning point.

Click here for more Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership results.

Click here for Harvey Norman Tarsha Gale Cup results.

Click here for UNE Harold Matthews Cup results.

Click here for SLE Laurie Daley Cup results.

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