SAINTS END DREAM RUN
ST MARYS Saints put up a valiant effort against Mounties at Pirtek Stadium on Sunday, but Ron Massey Cup rugby league glory was not to be.
The Saints made history – despite going down 36-16 in the decider – by being the first St Marys team in the competition.
While they had earned their place in the grand final with a spectacular nine-game winning streak, they were up against the team to beat and a fairytale ending eluded them.
Coach Brad Drew said the team would use the experience to be ready for next year’s competition. ››
The Saints went down fighting against Mounties, and should be proud of their efforts of making the grand final in their inaugural year in the elite competition.
St Marys came out firing with an early 6-4 lead, thanks to some excellent teamwork between Antonio Pelesasa and Nathan Smith, but the two teams were quickly locked at 10-10.
By halftime, the Mounties had claimed a 16-10 lead, which they quickly extended to 26-10 when play resumed.
Despite a nine-game winning streak, the St Marys side fell just short of the title – the 36-16 scoreline a definitive win for the minor premiers and favourites.
Drew conceded the Mounties were the better team on the day.
“They’re a good side,” Drew said.
“I knew it was going to be a tough game for us. We tried hard, but there were a couple of moments where we could have stepped up and didn’t.
“They deserved to win; they have been the best throughout the season.”
Drew said there had been plenty of lessons learnt throughout the year.
“It hurts losing, but to get to the grand final in our first year is obviously a big achievement for the club,” Drew said.
“We know where we need to be for next year. I don’t think we were at all at our best (in the final). It’s certainly a big learning curve for the boys. On the day, we just weren’t good enough.
“Hopefully, everyone improves – me as the coach and them as the players.”
St Marys’ Tom Eisenhuth charges through the Mounties defence.
Clockwise: Cam Collins is lifted by teammate ate Antonio Pelesasa to celebrate a try; lan Eisenhuth takes up the ball; Tom Eisenhuth tackles Mounties’ Finlay Dibley.