Blackhawks prevail after Devilish time
THE Townsville Blackhawks did it the tough way against the Norths Devils yesterday but still came out tops with a grinding 12- 6 win.
An early first- half double from Blackhawks fullback Carlin Anderson proved the difference in the unspectacular but hard- hitting contest, which produced a scoreless second term as Norths’ defence held firm in the face of relentless pressure.
Norths saw off five repeat attacking sets on their line early in the second stanza but never looked like leaking points, with the Blackhawks struggling to make inroads.
It was a far cry from the attacking masterclass the Blackhawks put up in their 50- 8 hammering of Tweed Heads the week before.
“I was pretty disappointed with how we played, more from the point of view that I thought we’d been in a really good rhythm for the last few weeks,” Blackhawks coach Kristian Woolf said.
“We just dropped our standard a little bit today, which is always disappointing but it’s good to be able to do that and still get the win.
“It’s three wins in a row now, which is always tough in this competition, so we get the bye now and a week off which will do us a world of good.”
Cowboys- allocated fiveeighth Kyle Laybutt returned to Blackhawks’ duty despite travelling to Canberra as North Queensland’s 18th man.
The Bundaberg junior travelled from Canberra yesterday morning and arrived at Jack Manski Oval an hour before kick- off.
New Blackhawks signing and former Broncos forward Francis Molo also sat with the Blackhawks bench yesterday, and was a chance of playing against his former Q Cup allocated team.
“I just thought it was a bit too rushed for him,” said Woolf, who coached Molo at the Broncos.
“It would have put him under a bit of pressure to play against a team he was just playing for a week ago, and it would have meant getting him up here as early as we could so he could get a training session for us.
“He’s a terrific player, a very good footy player and for different reasons – of which a lot of us are aware – he was probably going a bit stale where he was.
“He’s a dominant player at this level and I’ve go no doubt if he comes up here and does that he’ll get some first grades games as well.”
The Blackhawks wasted little time getting their first points yesterday, with Anderson scoring in the far corner after three minutes and Picture: WESLEY MONTS then nailing the sideline conversion to make it 6- 0.
But Norths soon equalised when fullback Jarvan White spotted no player sitting back for the Blackhawks, grubbering to himself and then running away to score under the posts.
Norths applied more pressure but the Blackhawks again hit the lead when Anderson got his second, starting the move when finding space down the blindside to pass outside for Jonathan Reuben, who passed back to Anderson to score.
For the next hour both teams worked hard to find a breakthrough, but to no avail as the Blackhawks grabbed another win to jump to fifth on the Q Cup ladder.