By Casey O'Connor
The Stanthorpe Gremlins scored an impressive away win in the final fixture round of the TRL Clive Berghofer Second Division competition defeating Goondiwindi 38-20. It was the fifth win of the season for the Stanthorpe side and assured them of a place in the 2019 finals.
It was an eye catching win on the back of the team’s big win at home last weekend during the Stanthorpe Rugby League Celebrations.
The Gremlins burst of the blocks scoring at better than a point a minute. After 13 minutes they had posted three tries and three Conversions. Prolific point scorer, Jake Burnell was off to a blistering start with two tries and three conversions. The other try coming from Zac Hendry.
The Gremlins had the Boars on the back foot and silenced the big crowd.
William Leo gave the Boar’s supporters something to cheer about when he was next to score putting the home-side on the board. The score 18-4.
The Gremlins quickly shut down any further scoring opportunities from the Boars and were able to take full advantage of the breeze (gale) behind them in the first half. Two 40/20’s off the boot of Burnell gave the Gremlins excellent field position. The Gremlins posted another two tries courtesy of Jason Cobon, now one of the veterans of the side and Lachlan Hendry before the half time break. One the back of the safe boot of Jake Burnell the Gremlins went to half time leading 30-4.
The Boars opened the second half with more commitment and drew first blood in the opening minutes when Cohen Fernando scored and then converted his own try.
The Gremlins were tenacious and a good play from Connor Hartley Simpson and another Burnell conversion extended the margin to 38-10 with a little over 10 minutes to play.
The Boars, now with the wind at their backs threw everything at the visitors adding another two tries and a conversion however the horse had bolted. The final score Gremlins 38- Goondiwindi 20.
It was an impressive performance from the Gremlins and they now head into the finals series.
The points table at the end of the fixture rounds looked this way: – Newtown (20); Gatton (16); Stanthorpe (11); Goondiwindi (11); Texas (7); Warwick (5); Valleys (0).
Of the five teams that will compete for the Clive Berghofer Second Division Premiership, two are former BRL teams.
This weekend Newtown as Minor Premiers have a week off and on Saturday Goondiwindi play Texas in the elimination final and Stanthorpe and Gatton go head to head on Sunday. Kick off at Clive Berghofer Oval is 2.00pm Saturday and 10.00am Sunday.
Stanthorpe captain Gary skimmings has every reason to be pleased with his side. They look to have peaked at the right end of the season but will need to show the good form of recent games when they take on the Hawks. The two sides only met once during the fixtures and that resulted in a nail biting 10-6 win to the Hawks in round eight.
TRL FINALS WEEK ONE
Second Division – Goondiwindi vs Texas at 2pm
U18s – Goondiwindi vs Highfields at 3.30pm
Reserve grade – Wattles vs Highfields at 5pm
A-grade – Dalby vs Goondiwindi at 7pm
Second Division – Gatton vs Stanthorpe at 10am
U18s – Dalby vs Gatton at 11.30am
Reserve Grade – Goondiwindi vs Gatton at 1pm
A-grade – Wattles vs Warwick at 2.30pm
All games played at Clive Berghofer Stadium