Turkeys take an intriguing contest
ON A freezing Sunday afternoon in Ballina the Commercial Hotel Kyogle sponsored Turkeys, Kyogle Real Estate and Dave's Bakehouse A-grade side took on the Ballina Seagulls in a crucial game to determine places on the competition ladder.
Ballina began the day one point ahead of Kyogle who were running third and the result could not have been better for the Turkeys who leap-frogged their opponents to be sitting outright second.
In a great game of rugby league the Seagulls were in front at half time 18-12 with some super tries being scored and none was better than the one when Simon Pederson crossed the line.
During this half dynamic fullback Sam Nicholson suffered a nasty head clash that resulted in him having to leave the field with a cut eye.
A feature of this half was the magnificent defence of Ryan Daley who was instrumental in saving at least two tries.
After the break young Marty Ferguson crossed to level the scores at 18-18 before Ballina shot to a 10-point lead with 15 minutes to play and led 28-18.
Kyogle were down to 12 men after Nigel Roy was sent to the sin bin but Scott Lavelle then scored a typical hard forwards try that was converted and Kyogle were behind by only four points with four minutes to play.
Heydon Pratt scored out wide and the scores were locked up again until Simon Pederson kicked a marvellous conversion from the sideline and Kyogle had won an intriguing contest 30-28.
There were plenty of stars in the Kyogle side but special mention must be made of Ryan Dale's effort.
The Stuart Brothers Butchers and Kyogle Bowling Club reserve grade side just couldn't control the ball and lost possession on too many occasions to pose a real threat to the Seagull side.
You can't win a football game without the ball and to keep coughing it up to your opposition ensures defeat.
On top of this many players were guilty of falling off tackles in defence and this meant that pressure could not be maintained.
Going down by 24-44 was probably a flattering result given the mistake rate.
There were some good performers with Matty Painter outstanding while Billy Bugden and Johnny Walker played well. Now equal third on the table, the balance of the season's games will be crucial to how this side finishes.
The Kyogle Soul Pattinson Pharmacy and Brown and Hurley under-18 side continued on their winning way with a dominant 44-18 victory to stay equal competition leaders.
Some good performers here with Jacob Skinner and Marty Ferguson the standouts.
Kyogle is home to Northern United on Saturday at New Park with the U18s starting at 1pm. Supporters are urged to get behind the Turkeys who could have all three teams in this year's finals.