The second half century of the season and a fifth individual hat-trick were the standout features of the Vodafone Junior Warriors’ 58-20 trouncing of Canterbury-Bankstown in Sunday’s sixth-round NYC clash at Eden Park.
The big points total came just three weeks after the Vodafone Junior Warriors posted 50 points against North Queensland in winning their first match of the campaign.
More remarkable, though, has been the run of try-scoring triples with at least one in each of the team’s last four matches.
Tuimoala Lolohea and David Fusitua each claimed three tries against the Cowboys while Micheal Ki followed in the win against Wests Tigers, Metia Lisati in the loss to the Sharks last week and 17-year-old fullback Brad Abbey claimed three against the Bulldogs.
Abbey, who doesn’t turn 18 until the end of the year, feasted on the opportunities he had in a display which underlined the quality which has seen the Vodafone Warriors sign him through to the end of 2016.
If Abbey’s skills were a joy to watch the most spectacular deeds were provided by debutant winger Tomas Patelesio who scored twice in a matter of minutes in the first half. Each time he had to back pedal to grab the ball and then, with so little room to work with, stepped, squirmed and surged across wide out. His finishing ability was all class.
If the Vodafone Junior Warriors were a little slow to get under way they struck a sizzling patch either side of halftime. There were three tries in the last 10 minutes of the first spell and then four more in the opening 15 minutes of the second, a run of 36 points in 25 minutes which enabled them to bolt out to a 46-10 lead.
They finished off with two more tries before allowing the Bulldogs to finish the scoring with two consolation efforts.
At Eden Park, Auckland
Vodafone Junior Warriors 58 (Brad Abbey 3, Tomas Patelesio 2, Sam Lisone, Nathaniel Roache, Ofahiki Ogden; Ata Hingano, Braxton Stanley, Adam Tuimavave-Gerrard tries; Mason Lino 7 conversions).
Canterbury-Bankstown 20 (Aaron Pene, Adam Elliott, Dujuan Liolevave, Brock Cope tries; Guy Hamilton 2 conversions).
Halftime: 24-10 Vodafone Junior Warriors.
Referee: Matt Noyen and Ziggy Przeklaski-Adamski.
Vodafone Junior Warriors: Brad Abbey; Tomas Patelesio, Ken Maumalo, Adam Tuimavave-Gerrard, Braxton Stanley; Mafoa’aeata Hingano, Mason Lino (c); Sam Lisone, Kurt Robinson, Toafofoa Sipley; Michael Ki, Ofahiki Ogden; Kouma Samson. Interchange: Nathaniel Roache, James Bell, James Taylor, Iulio Afoa.