DRAG(O)N A COWBOY | The St George-Illawarra Dragons have claimed a narrow win over the reigning prem...
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THE Cronulla Sharks were just too good for the Newcastle Knights in Jersey Flegg's round 19. A second half scoring spree set up the 50 point drubbing along with giving the Sharks a handy boost to their points differential. It gave the Knights differential a bit of a caning.
The Sharks opened the scoring for the afternoon after just 5 minutes when replacement Matt Raftery crossed out wide. Winger Bryson Goodwin failed to add the extras and the Sharks led 4-0. In the 15th minute, the Sharks extended their 4-0 lead out to 10-0 when Goodwin scored out wide and converted his own try. In the 20th minute Sharks centre Kurt Puohotaua put his team ahead 14-0 as Goodwin missed the conversion. With 3 minutes remaining in the first half, Knights winger Stephen Gordon scored his sides only try after a clever kick from halfback Luke Walsh. Walsh converted from beside the posts and the Knights trailed by 14-6. On the stroke of halftime, Goodwin extended the Sharks lead to 10 points when he converted a penalty goal after the siren. This left the Sharks heading into the break up 16-6.
The second half was all the Sharks as they piled on a further 7 tries. Centre Puohotaua sparked a try-scoring spree for his side when he crossed for his second try of the match 5 minutes into the second half. 5 minutes later, the Sharks were in again, through interchange forward Puna Rasaubale. Goodwin added the conversion and the Sharks led 28-6 in the blink of an eye. From the kick-off, the Sharks fullback Isaac Gordon scored on play 4 and the Sharks had extended their lead to 34-6 and the game was as good as over. The Sharks continued to pile on the second half points when Dane Nielsen scored the first of his double. Goodwin continued to pot goals from all over Toyota Park. Front rower Jeremy Latimore added his name to the scoresheet in the 53rd minute when he finished off a 70 metre movement, started by a chip kick from halfback Ben Green and continual backing up from the Sharks. Puohotaua completed his hat-trick 15 minutes from time as the Sharks continued adding to the Knights misery. In the 68th minute, Nielsen scored his second try of the match, which took the Sharks past the 50 mark. Goodwin kicked his 8th goal from 11 attempts which made the final score of the Sharks 56 defeated the Knights 6.
For the Sharks, the halves Reece Blayney and Ben Green were very dominant, having a hand in almost every try. Goodwin had a good game, kicking 8 goals from 11 attempts and adding a try for a personal tally of 20 points. The win consolidated the Sharks spot in the top 8 and the Knights loss did not effect their standing as they remained in 6th position as they had a 4 point break on Western Suburbs before the weekend kicked off.