Wests Tigers’ NYC side have broken a three game losing streak with an entertaining 34-18 victory over the Melbourne Storm at Leichhardt Oval this evening.
With both sides going into the clash unchanged, the young Wests Tigers got off to great start with prop Matt Lodge popping a nice ball close to the line for his front row partner Junior Tatola to crash over next to the posts. Matt Woods converted for a 6-0 lead.
Melbourne enjoyed a raft of possession following the try, and were rewarded in the 19th minute when centre Junior Kirisome scored out wide from a cross field kick.
Mack Mason failed to convert from the sideline, leaving the scoreline at 6-4.
It was not long until the Tigers responded soon after, courtesy of winger Ryland Jacobs, who ran a nice line to break through and score near the sticks.
Woods had no problems with the conversion and extended the lead to 12-4.
Both sides were going try for try when Melbourne hit back through a nice spread to winger Tony Tumusa, who went over untouched in the corner in the 34th minute. Mason’s conversion fell short, leaving the scoreline at 12-8 at the half-time break.
Brett Kimmorley’s talk at the break did wonders for the side, with the young cubs exploding out the blocks in the second half.
Centre Obed Kawrwhin was first to score just a minute in, using brute force taking four Storm defenders with him to dive over in the corner.
Jeremy Marshall-King missed from the sideline, leaving the scoreline at 16-8.
Hooker Jacob Liddle extended the lead just minutes later, when he was on the end of a Te Maire Martin break and pass. Winger Tom Satterthwaite took over the goal kicking duties and made no mistakes — taking out the lead to 14 with more than half an hour still to play.
Experienced prop Matt Lodge was placed on report in the 51st minute for a dangerous tackle and Melbourne soon responded with a try off a grubber kick to Shae Ah Fook in the 52nd minute. Mason missed the conversion, however, leaving the score at 22-12.
Fresh onto the field following his break, prop Junior Tatola charged onto the ball and was over for his second try of the nigh. Matt Woods was back and converted the side’s fifth try of the night, taking the home side's lead out to a commanding 28-12 advantage.
With a comfortable lead, Wests Tigers began to chance their arm with some impressive phases of play and were unlucky on several occasions not to have further extended the score line.
The visitors crossed with five minutes remaining through forward Kurt Bernard, however Wests Tigers iced victory in the final minute of the game when Veiru Mapesone crossed under the posts to secure a much-needed victory and keep their finals hopes alive.
Wests Tigers 34
Tries: Junior Tatola (2), Ryland Jacobs, Obed Karwhin, and Jacob Liddle
Goals: Matt Woods 4/4, Tom Satterthwaite 1/1, Jeremy Marshall King 0/1
Melbourne Storm 18
Tries: Junior Kirisome, Tony Tumusa, Shae Ah Fook, and Kurt Bernard
Goals: Mack Mason 1/4