NYC: Storm 20, Vodafone Junior Warriors 36

Six converted tries including a double to centre David Fusitua (pictured) carried the Vodafone Junior Warriors to an impressive 36-20 win over second-placed Melbourne in Saturday nights seventh-round NYC clash at AAMI Park. Photo: Photosport.


By extending their unbeaten run to five games, the Vodafone Junior Warriors moved up from seventh to fourth on the points table.


They opened confidently with an early try to standoff Tuimoala Lolohea and, despite falling 6-10 behind after conceding two tries to the locals, looked to have a measure of control leading 18-10 at halftime after tries to hooker Michael Sio and winger Ken Maumalo.


It was the launching pad for a second half display which showed the Vodafone Junior Warriors will again be one of the NYCs leading contenders this season.


The second half was only six minutes old when lively centre Solomone Kata had the teams fourth try, Mason Lino again converted and the margin was a healthy 24-10.


By the 61st minute it was 30-10 via the first of Fusituas two tries but the march to a bigger margin was halted as the Storm recovered with two tries to close to 20-30 with seven minutes still to play.


Any fears the comeback would continue were allayed, though, with Fusitua scoring again in the 80th minute to carry the Vodafone Junior Warriors to their fourth win in their last five starts (after drawing with Canberra 12 days ago).


After their last two matches on the road, the Vodafone Junior Warriors will be at home for the first time in a month when they face Gold Coast at Mount Smart Stadium on Sunday week (May 5).


Match details:


At AAMI Park, Melbourne

Melbourne Storm 20 (Cade Umaga 2, Kurt Mann, Denny Solomona tries; Matt McGahan 2 conversions).

Vodafone Junior Warriors 36 (David Fusitua 2, Tuimoala Lolohea, Michael Sio, Ken Maumalo, Solomone Kata tries; Mason Lino 6 conversions).

Halftime: 18-10 Vodafone Junior Warriors.

Referees: Tim Rutherford.


Vodafone Junior Warriors: Ngataua Hukatai; Ken Maumalo, Solomone Kata, David Fusitua, Alamoti Finau; Tuimoala Lolohea, Mason Lino; Sam Lisone, Kurt Robinson, James Taylor; Raymond Faitalaa-Mariner, Adam Tuimavave-Gerrard; David Bhana (c). Interchange: Albert Vete, Michael Sio, Stedman Lefau, Katamiro Atera.