Rockingham Sharks assistant coach Alec Lindsay admitted there was still “lot of work to do” after the Sharks staged another thrilling second-half comeback on Saturday to defeat the Joondalup Giants 42-22.
Down 22-10 at halftime, Lindsay said players spoke about how to change it around in the sheds but added they needed to do more to establish themselves earlier in the game.
“We showed lots of energy in the second half and it was very important to get a win but we need to be starting games better,” Lindsay admitted.
“There’s lot of positives though to take from this win and with the ladder still so tight lots to play for.”
The Sharks exerted early pressure but came away with nothing before the big Giants pack found their momentum.
They took advantage of a penalty kick that failed to find touch and drove the length of the field to open the scoring after 10 minutes.
Five minutes later, exposing a weakness down the home side’s right flank, the visitors increased their lead before centre Tevita Pomale found the whitewash after a superb break from fullback Will Smith.
The Giants increased their lead four minutes later, again down the right flank as the Sharks struggled to organise their defensive line.
A further score increased the lead before Josh Jerome powered over to take the Sharks into the break only 12 points adrift.
What was to come in the second half was whirlwind football as Connor Hudson scored the first of seven unanswered tries to give the Sharks a deserved win.
Winger Hudson found space out wide in the first minute of the second stanza and with the conversion wide of there uprights, the Sharks trailed by eight.
But, with possession this Rockingham can hurt any opponent and within six minutes they were over again, Luke Hughes finding the try line.
Jack Wray’s kick made it a two-point game as the Sharks went in search of more.
They didn’t have to wait long. Four minutes later a Wray pass found Logan Barclay out wide for the big centre to dive across and for the first time in the game the Sharks were in front.
Kieren Crowe was next to cross, a clever show and go that fooled the Giants defence and suddenly the Sharks were eight in front and looking good.
But with 20 minutes remaining there was still plenty of work to be done as hooker Andrew Jeffery found space around the ruck to exploit a tiring Giants defence.
His bursts from dummy half gained much-needed metres and a 25m break helped set up Smith for another score in the 63rd minute.
Wray kicked the extras and the Sharks were on a roll against a Giants side that ran out of steam as the game wore on.
Discipline also played a part and when referee Michael Sims sin-binned two Giants players in the space of two minutes for backchatting his calls, the Sharks knew they were back on the winners’ rostrum.
Second row forward Ezra Taomia capped a fine display with an interception try three minutes from time, Wray’s kick went between the uprights and the home side had redeemed themselves.
- The Sharks travel to Willagee next weekend, Saturday, June 23, to take on the Bears in round 10 of the NRLWA Smarter Than Smoking Premiership.