AKW Jets were forced to dig deep in toasty conditions to earn a 7-6 win over Bar Up Bullbars in women’s Premier League action at Jubilee Park on Tuesday night.
There was little to nothing between the two sides for much of the night, but young speedster Sophie Crouch gave her side a massive boost when she tagged Shanae Pope right on the line to prevent Bar Up from taking a late lead.
Cleo Randal then stood up when it mattered at the other end of the field, whipping an inspired long ball to Sarah Crakanthorp for what ultimately proved to be the game-clinching try.
It was a slightly different story to start the game, with Bar Up jumping out to a 2-0 lead.
But it only lasted a matter of minutes, before AWK hit back with a pair of tries of their own.
Vienna Randal setting up Cathy Salmon for the equaliser before scoring a diving try of her own minutes later, and then another after half-time.
Jets coach Kevin Salmon said he was impressed with Cleo Randal’s presence of mind to make what proved to be a crucial play.
“Not everyone can read the play like that and throw the right ball,” he said.
“But one of Cleo’s strengths is the long ball, along with her vision, and she made a really good choice on that occasion.”
Salmon said that while his team still had some improvements to make, they did all he could ask of them in a taxing contest.
“I thought our girls really dug deep on a hot day,” he said.
“Bar Up’s attack is really potent down the line which meant we needed to defend tough all night.”
In the other women’s game, Don Tuckwell’s Audio downed Young Guns 9-4.
In the men’s competition, Advanced Communications Cobras showed their last-placed standing was nothing more than an early-season anomaly when they thrashed second-placed Katana Security Wizards 12-2.
Cobras leader Andrew Baggio appeared to be everywhere at once for his side, whipping precision long balls all over the park and setting up Chris Dowell and Cameron Copeland in such a fashion in the second-half.
Dowell was also a hub of activity, his effort highlights by a blistering sprint and try along the right wing late in the piece.
Meanwhile, MJR Electrics downed Quolls 10-9.