A six-try 30-12 win over North Sydney has lifted the Vodafone Warriors from ninth to sixth on the ladder after today’s Intrust Super Premiership at Bear Park in Sydney.
It was the Stacey Jones-coached side’s third win so far and the second on the road after a schedule which has seen the Vodafone Warriors saddled with four away games in the first six weeks of the season.
Heading into the match the Vodafone Warriors were sitting ninth on four points while the Bears were fifth after winning three games.
A rock solid first half defensive effort paved the way for the success, the Vodafone Warriors keeping the home side scoreless while fashioning tries for centre Matt Allwood and wing Ken Maumalo for an 8-0 lead. Maumalo’s try was his seventh in five starts this year while Allwood’s was his fourth in five games.
Having set the tone, the Vodafone Warriors continued in the same vein for much of the second half.
They exploded out of the gates with a try to wing Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad before Ligi Sao, making his return from injury, charged down a kick and flick passed to speedy fullback Henare Wells to run 60 metres for his first try for the club. Halfback Mason Lino converted both to have his side in control at 20-0.
There the margin remained for much of the second spell as the Vodafone Warriors set about defending their lead.
Then, with only 12 minutes left, the Bears struck with back-to-back tries in the space of two minutes, turning on some razzle dazzle for former Vodafone Warrior Dane Nielsen to score the first and then going the length of the field for a Brad Deitz try.
The Vodafone Warriors’ lead had suddenly been slashed to eight points with 10 minutes to play but they steadied with a 74th minute try to standoff Ata Hingano and another at the death for interchange wing Viliami Kaveinga to finish with an 18-point winning margin.
With Penrith winning the other match played today, it meant the Panthers moved up to fifth on six points, the Vodafone Warriors sixth on points for an against.
After such a demanding travel schedule, the Vodafone Warriors are home again at last next Saturday when they meet 11th-placed Newcastle on Mount Smart Stadium #2.
Match details | Bear Park, North Sydney
North Sydney Bears 12 (Dane Nielsen, Brad Deitz tries; Eli Levido 2 conversions).
Vodafone Warriors 30 (Matt Allwood, Ken Maumalo, Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad, Henare Wells, Ata Hingano, Viliami Kaveinga tries; Mason Lino 3 conversions).
Halftime: 8-0 Vodafone Warriors.
Referee: Jon Stone.
Vodafone Warriors | Henare Wells; Ken Maumalo, David Fusitu’a, Matt Allwood, Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad; Ata Hingano, Mason Lino; James Gavet, Jazz Tevaga, Toafofoa Sipley; Shaun Lane, John Palavi (c); Ligi Sao. Interchange: Erin Clark, Viliami Kaveinga, Sione Lousi, James Bell.