Promising performance: Eagles give City a scare

11-07-2018 by admin

Alex Webster looks to pass during Saturday’s loss to Orange City. Photo by Steve Gosch.Cowra’s two-point loss at Pride Park against Orange City on Saturday won’t harm their confidence or momentum, as the Eagles continue to develop as a force to be with reckoned with during this season’s Blowes Clothing Cup.

Cowra were the dominant side for the majority of the second half and were able to reduce a 14-point deficit in the 55th minute to just two at the final siren, when the scores read 26-24 in favour of the Lions.

A defiant defensive effort during the final 25 minutes helped City to hold on as the Eagles mounted countless attacking raids in search of 15 points which would see them steal victory.

After plenty of sustained pressure and a number of penalties – Cowra enjoyed an 8-2 penalty count in their favour in the second half alone – they did get within reach, through Tom Dewhurst and Adam Higgins in the 60th and 76th minutes respectively.

But, the Lions held firm in the shadows of full-time to claim a gritty win.

“We played the full 80 minutes, which was an aim of ours and encouraging but we went away from our game-plan a little bit which we haven’t done for the last three weeks, we’ll look at that,” Cowra coach Troy Hayes said.

“The last 10 minutes was pretty good but we needed to fix up some things in the 70 minutes before that. We missed goals and made silly errors, but they’re things to look at for next weekend now.”

After a scoreless opening 17 minutes Ben Wright barged his way over to give the Lions the lead on the back of sustained pressure, built from Orange City finally putting some phase-play together.

Every time they did so in the game, they scored.

Cowra hooker Ethan Cartwright cancelled Wright’s try out just three minutes later though, and fullback Alex Webster’s conversion tied things up at 7-7.

Cameron Cole and Feleti Wolfgramm crossed in the 31st and 35th minutes respectively, before Eagles skipper Chris Miller was shown yellow for using his boots just before half-time.

Dwyer missed one conversion and Keegan Harding slotted the other despite kicking it off the ground and it being touched mid-air, for Orange City to lead 19-7 at the break.

Matt Spicer opened the scoring in the second half, crossing out wide, but Lions replacement prop Sena Fatai hit back for his side five minutes later.

The Eagles shifted up a gear with Dewhurst scoring in the 60th and spent the next 20 minutes camped in Orange City’s half.

Higgins went over after back-to-back penalties with four minutes to go and Webster hit the mark to make it 26-24, but the Lions held strong.

“We certainly looked better in defence than we did against Forbes and there was a lot more enthusiasm,” Orange City coach Steve Hamson said.

“The guys showed plenty of heart in that one. The set-piece was quite good too, our scrum finally moved forward at times.”

Orange City Lions 26 (Ben Wright, Cameron Cole, Feleti Wolfgramm, Sena Fatai tries; Keegan Harding 2, Sam Dwyer conv.) defeated Cowra Eagles 24 (Ethan Cartwright, Matt Spicer, Tom Dewhurst, Adam Higgins tries; Alex Webster 2 conv.)

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