Young Eels Outlast Dogs
The Dyldam Parramatta Eels Under 20s side has run in a late try and slotted a penalty goal for a 30-20 win over the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs on Friday night at ANZ Stadium.
Locked up at 14-14 at halftime, the Blue and Gold proved too hard to contain in the second half, stretching out to a ten-point lead for their second win of the 2016 season.
The visitors tested the home side early, as Michael Doolan - wearing the number one jersey - cleaned up a Bulldogs grubber kick, running 20 metres to offload.
Troy Dargan sped 80 metres, only to be pulled down just short of the line, and a cross-field kick was ruled a knock on to deny another potential four-pointer.
The Bulldogs capitalised on the penalty, gaining field position, and sending a cut-out pass to the left edge for winger Marcelo Montoya to score in the corner.
Prop Lachlan Lee offloaded in the ninth minute for Bulldogs fullback Josh Bergamin to power over beside the posts for a 10-0 lead.
It took nineteen minutes for the Blue and Gold to find the try line, courtesy of Captain Denzal Tonise burrowing over from dummy half, and Jermaine Mati-Leifi added four more, slipping past on the left edge on the end of the cut-out pass in the 24th minute.
The Bulldogs found easy run metres in response, eventually popping a cross-field kick for a flying Jayden Okunbor to collect and ground in the right corner.
Returning to the field for the second half locked up at 14-14, the Bulldogs struck first, sending Montoya on a huge run up the left edge, pulled down just short of the tryline by Doolan. Okunbur bagged his second of the night on the next play, as the ball headed to the right edge and the centre proved too powerful.
Eels centre Dane Aukafolau found just enough room in the 56th minute to barge over the line carrying three defenders with him, and Troy Dargan extended the Eels’ lead in the 61st minute with a try and a conversion to boot.
Second-rower Jack Morris scooped up a loose ball in the Dogs’ end to add another four points, and a penalty in the 75th minute gave Dargan the opportunity to add another two points to seal the 30-20 victory.
Dyldam Parramatta Eels - 30 (Tonise, Mati-Leifi 2, Aukafolau, Dargan, Morris. Mati-Leifi: 1/3. Dargan: 1/3. Penalty goals - Dargan 1/1).
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs - 20 (Montoya, Bergamin, Okunbor 2. Greene: 2/4).