The Clubhouse Hotel Singleton Greyhounds came within a single point of a rare clean sweep in four grades against the Scone Thoroughbreds at Scone Park last Sunday.
The Ourcare First Grade side went tantalisingly close to upsetting last season’s premiers Scone losing 25 – 24. Two tries just before the half-time break proved crucial for the home side. Singleton’s preparation was thrown into disarray pre-game with four players ruled out mid-week. This opened the door for a number of players to make their First grade debut’s including Ethan Coe and Under 18 players Lewis Hamilton and Cody Argent.
The Dog’s start wasn’t great with an error from the kick-off followed by a penalty resulting in a try in the corner to the home side. The greyhound’s returned serve with captain-coach Jye Bayley providing an inside ball to prop Chris Martin to crash and level the scores at 4 – 4. Singleton dominated the next 20 minutes with field position and possession however some unforced errors failed to realise any points.
Scone scored out wide in the 23rd minute before Adam Hamilton pounced on a loose ball to run 50 metres to reduce the margin to 10 – 8. Piggy back penalties and a sin binning saw Singleton reduced to 12 men. Scone scored twice giving them a strong 20 – 8 at the break. The Dog’s talked about the area’s they needed to be better however it was scone that posted first points after the break with another try in the 48th minute to lead 24 – 8. Finally Singleton enjoyed some possession and it allowed Martin to offload a brilliant ball into the waiting arms of debutant Lewis Hamilton to score a good try. Again the conversion failed but it reduce the deficit to 24 – 12 in favour of Scone. In the 64th minute skipper Jye Bayley was struck down with a serious hamstring injury which may have signalled the end of the Dog’s effort. Soon after Russell Richards slipped into the playmaker role and put up a towering bomb that went uncontested by the home side with winger Codey O’Hara pouncing on the ball in-goal. Ethan Coe assumed the kicking duties and kicked a handy conversion to put Scone on notice at 24 – 18 with 14minutes to go.
Adam Hamilton, who had a mixed day, produced a fantastic one-on-one effort to prevent a Scone try and give his team possession once more. Singleton had a couple of decent chances to level however they came up short or pulled the wrong rein. Scone kicked a field goal to make it a seven point margin at 25 – 18 but the impressive aspect for Singleton was their never say die attitude until the end. Half Jake Smith sent a well-timed grubber into the in-goal for fullback Will Niewenhuise to pounce and score under the posts as the fulltime hooter sounded.
The Remondis Group Reserve grade side took a while to find its feet in the warm conditions against Scone with the big men doing it tough early. The Dogs went to half-time leading 16 – 12 with tries to Zac Howlett (2) and Brodie Rinkin and two goals to Jake Mackaway. Scone scored either side of the break to assume momentum and lead 22 – 16 and for while it looked as though Singleton’s recent dominance over the Thoroughbreds was coming to an end. Singleton’s Joel Parson’s in particular was providing some excellent second phase play as the Greyhounds found their groove soon after to race in another four unanswered tries to Jordan Watson, Jake Willis, Scott Matthews and Brodie Rinkin to round out a 40 – 22 win. The team will get a few troops back this week which will be handy given a few injuries in the top grade.
The Singleton Tyre Centre Under 18’s proved far too strong for the locals in their first formal outing for the year defeating Scone 42 – 12. It was a bit clunky and not unexpected for the first game of the year however there were also some exciting passages of play resulting in classy finishing in the nine tries to two win. It was only 14 – 6 at the break following tries to James Bradley (2) and the first of two for Hayden Bourke. The 6-man interchange was given its chance to impress during the latter stages of the half and they acquitted their roles reasonably well. After re-asserting the key areas at the break the second half was a more controlled performance with Tyler Campbell bagging two tries along with Cody Argent, Tom Baker and Kyle Knight. Only three goals were landed by James Bradley, Zac Butler and Morgan Amidy to round out the final score. The team will need to raise the bar again this week.
The Entire Concrete Ladies league-tag side started their 2017 campaign in great fashion against premiers Scone, trouncing the home side 32 – 6. Scone having been the dominant force for so long appear to be going through a rebuilding phase but take nothing away from our girls who defensive work in the off season kept their line intact bar one try. The team showed great poise in attack with many line breaks that resulted in tries and with even better support play, the score may have been greater. Tries to Casey Fernance (2), Ebony Ford (2), Tyler Kersley and Brodie Sinclair. Four conversions from Holly Fisher-Webster rounded out a very solid win.
The R.E and W.J GardnerTransport ‘Players Player’ recipients were Lewis Hamilton (1st Grade), Joel Parson’s (Reserves), Cody Argent (Under 18) and Holly Fisher-Webster (Ladies). Next week it’s the first home game of the season with Singleton hosting Denman in four grades at Pirtek Park. Denman First grade look to be a real force this year so a big home crowd will be needed on Sunday to help steer the boys home.
Round 2 - Sunday March 30 @ Pirtek Park
First Grade: Singleton V Denman @ 2:00pm
Reserve Grade: Singleton V Denman @ 12:30pm
Under 18’s: Singleton V Denman @ 11:20am
Ladies L-Tag: Singleton V Denman @ 10:20am