Black­hawks up­beat Ti­tle tilt con­tin­ues af­ter fourth- straight tri­umph

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT - MICHAEL THOMP­SON michael. thomp­son@ news. com. au

THE Townsville Black­hawks be­lieve the screws are fi­nally start­ing to turn on their pre­mier­ship charge fol­low­ing Satur­day’s hard- fought 32- 10 win over the North­ern Pride.

A sec­ond- half surge of tries from Car­lin An­der­son, Kyle Lay­butt, Kier­ran Mose­ley and Jor­dan Ken­wor­thy saw the Black­hawks score their fourth- straight win af­ter over­com­ing a highly phys­i­cal first half, which saw the Black­hawks lead 6- 0 at half­time thanks to an early try from Jor­dan Drew.

Lay­butt got the Black­hawks’ fourth with a spec- tac­u­lar solo ef­fort mid­way through the sec­ond stanza, kick­ing to him­self through the Pride’s in- goal be­fore mak­ing a spec­tac­u­lar dive to ground the ball just inches from the dead- ball line.

But the mo­ment of the match be­longed to the epic first- half foot race be­tween Black­hawks winger Jonathon Reuben and Cow­boys al­lo­cated speed­ster Gideon Ge­laMosby.

Gela- Mosby made an in­ter­cept in front of his team’s try­line and looked cer­tain to run away with an all- im­por­tant equaliser, but Reuben matched Gela- Mosby’s made ground, run­ning the winger down and al­most drag­ging him into touch.

The 22nd- minute foot chase proved to be a turn­ing point, with the Pride un­able to crack the Black­hawks de­fence un­til af­ter half­time when Cow­boys al­lo­ca­tion Mar­cus Jensen got a four­pointer with a good side­line ef­fort right af­ter the break.

“That’s why I gave it the play of the day; Gideon scores there and it’s 6- all and it re­ally changes their mind­set, gives them con­fi­dence and changes our mind­set as well,” Black­hawks coach Kris­tian Woolf said. “It was a mas­sive play and footy is all about mo­men­tum, and mak­ing the play when it’s on. That’s ex­actly what Jono did.”

Te­mone Power crashed over for the Black­hawks’ sec­ond try less than 10 min­utes af­ter half­time, and while the Pride hit back through Troy Ka­pea just two min­utes later, the gulf in class be­tween the two sides be­gan to show.

An­der­son latched on to a short ball soon af­ter Ka­pea’s try, step­ping Pride full­back Kienan Gro­gan- Hayes to score un­der the posts, but An­der­son’s eye- catch­ing ef­fort was soon out­done by Lay­butt’s div­ing try.

Mose­ley put it be­yond doubt on 67 min­utes when he plunged into the Pride’s de­fen­sive line, step­ping and fend­ing de­fend­ers to make it 28- 10, and then Ken­wor­thy added fur­ther ic­ing to the re­sult with his own barn­storm­ing ef­fort.

The Black­hawks won the re­vamped Fo­ley Shield as a re­sult and got a glimpse of what mid- sea­son sign­ing Fran­cis Molo will bring af­ter play­ing a lim­ited but ef­fec­tive role

“He’ll play a big­ger role next week be­cause it’s not easy com­ing into a side,” Woolf said. “He trained with us once on Mon­day, had a cap­tain’s run and had a cou­ple of runs over at the Cow­boys ... so I think he did a re­ally good job.”

The fifth- placed Black­hawks emerged with in­jury con­cerns to Ross Bella ( con­cus­sion) and Drew ( leg), who were taken off the field in the sec­ond half, but both could be avail­able for this week­end’s coun­try round game against Ip­swich in Win­ton.

The Black­hawks also made a pre- game change af­ter first choice half­back Michael Parker- Wal­she failed a late fit­ness test to an in­jured shoul­der done in the club’s pre­vi­ous game against Norths, with Lay­butt tak­ing his place at No. 7 and Mose­ley slot­ting in at five- eighth.

Pic­ture: SCOTT RADFORD- CHISHOLM

HEAVY CON­TACT: Townsville Black­hawks player Jor­dan Drew gets an off­load away against the North­ern Pride at Jack Man­ski Oval.

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