Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

REBELS SHELLSHOCKED; South Grafton Outmuscled and Outplayed by Willing Sea Eagles

Newspaper article Daily Examiner (Grafton, Australia)

REBELS SHELLSHOCKED; South Grafton Outmuscled and Outplayed by Willing Sea Eagles

Article excerpt

Byline: Matthew Elkerton matthew.elkerton@dailyexaminer.com.au

RUGBY LEAGUE: A slow start and lapses in concentration cost the South Grafton Rebels at McKittrick Park as they fell at the hands of a willing Macksville Sea Eagles.

To make matters worse, Rebels captain Karl Woodley was stretchered from the field and coach Ron Gordon ejected in the 34-18 loss.

If someone knew the whistle had blown to start the game, they forgot to let the Rebels know about it.

The side was slow out of the blocks and soon had their pants pulled down by the Sea Eagles backline with a long ball landing in the hands of winger Keith Donovan who strolled in to score.

The Sea Eagles had come to play, and they rolled over the Rebels through the middle third with front-rower Ben Cockbain working through the channel behind the ruck.

The Rebels struggled to keep up with the pace of the Sea Eagles, as the visitors continued to put the ball through hands.

But it would be the Rebels who drew next blood with pocket-sized halfback Jerome Green breaking through and running the length of the field for a try against the run of play.

With the scores locked up the Rebels looked to work back into the contest but poor efforts in defence continued to cost the home side.

When Rebels centre Aaron Taylor was sent to the sin bin, in controversial circumstances, the situation went from bad to worse for the red and whites.

The Sea Eagles took full advantage of the extra man on the field and began to work over the Rebels short left edge.

Five-eighth Jake Simpson was the first of two Sea Eagles to score after he cut through a couple of lazy arms to touch down beside the posts.

Fullback Tyler Blair also crossed while Taylor was in the sin bin after an outside-inside play got him on the inside of second-rower Josh Harris, with the sides heading to the break at 16-6 to the visitors. …

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