The Vodafone Junior Warriors withstood a withering second half comeback by Cronulla to secure their second straight NYC win – 36-32 – in today’s 16th-round NYC clash at Southern Cross Group Stadium today.
The Kelvin Wright-coached side had a commanding 30-6 halftime lead, leaving them well-placed to back up their impressive 40-20 win over the Sydney Roosters last week.
Instead the Sharks roared back into contention with four tries in the third quarter to be just two points adrift – 28-30 – with 20 minutes still to play.
They had all the momentum but the Vodafone Junior Warriors were able to check their charge, regroup and then arrange a game-breaking second try for wing Lewis Soosemea, fullback Kane Telea adding his sixth conversion of the day to take his side out to a 36-28 lead with seven minutes to play.
With two minutes left the home side trimmed the margin to 36-32 but the Vodafone Junior Warriors negotiated the final moments to secure victory over a side sitting well inside the top eight on 20 points.
This win took to Vodafone Junior Warriors to 14 points with a 6-9 win-loss record.
They conceded the first today but then launched a relentless onslaught scoring five tries – all converted by Telea – to lead 30-6. Mount Wellington junior Telea had two of the tries while the others were scored by Joseph Price, Matt Faitotoa and Soosemea.
Match details | Southern Cross Group Stadium, Cronulla
Cronulla Sharks 32.
Vodafone Junior Warriors 36 (Kane Telea 2, Lewis Soosemea 2, Joseph Price, Matt Faitotoa tries; Kane Telea 6 conversions).
Halftime: 30-6 Vodafone Junior Warriors.
Referee: Chris Treneman.
Vodafone Junior Warriors | Kane Telea; Lewis Soosemea, Junior Pauga, Alfred Smalley, Matt Faitiotoa; Chanel Harris-Tavita, Eiden Ackland; Bunty Afoa, Nathaniel Roache, Chris Sio; Joseph Vuna, Joseph Price; Erin Clark. Interchange: Kenese Kenese, Sheldon Pitama (c), Jerome Mamea, Mattais Heimuli.