Premiers East Campbelltown are back on track to defend their title after a dominant display against the Hills Bulls yesterday,
The Eagles were too good for the visitors, winning 56-16 in front of their loyal fans at Waminda “Tint Me Up” Oval.
But as happy as coach Richard Barnes was after the match, he pointed out the team need to avoid lapses of concentration which could cost them come finals time.
“It’s always great to get the win but I need to address our lack of keeping the pressure on our opposition for the full 80 minutes,’’ Barnes said.
“We are allowing teams to come back into the game which we just can’t afford to do in the Sydney Shield competition.
“Apart from that, the guys are jelling well and I’m very happy with where we sit at the half way mark of the competition,’’ Barnes said.
Best for the Eagles where Brett Lahey, Vince Ripepi, Theo Leato and Gus Garzaniti.
Andrew Faigatusa was named the Players Player and man of the match honours went to Shannon Gallant.
The Eagles put on an early blitz to score two tries courtesy of Gus Garzaniti to race to a 12-0 lead, with Shannon Gallant converting both.
It was on for young and old when Brett Lahey scored next and again Gallant converted.
When Gus Garzaniti bagged a hat trick, followed by a fifth try, this time to Gallant, it was suddenly of question of by how much?
At 28-0 the Eagles were cruising, but that’s when the lapse in concentration allowed the Hills back in the game.
The visitors scored two tries in a 10 minute period to go into half-time trailing 28-10.
A third after the break gave them a sniff at 28-16, but unfortunately for the visitors it was also the wake up call the Eagles needed.
The home side responded swiftly with Jeremiah Leasi crossing for a try, followed by Shannon Gallant for his second of the day.
Gallant’s right foot was on target with another two conversions to extend the lead to 40-16.
Eagles right centre Theo Leato scored a hat trick before the full time siren for the Eagles to finish strong winners 56-16 and Gallant kicking an impressive eight from nine.
East Campbelltown Eagles host Penrith Brothers this Sunday at Waminda at 2.30pm, with lower grade games from 10.30am.
Under 17s Division 1:
St Johns Park 32 East Campbelltown 10
Hill Bulls 28 East Campbelltown 22
East Campbelltown 26 Merrylands 12