08/8/2015 - Emus’ first-half onslaught sets up big win over Wombats

GREEN MACHINE: Orange Emus in a huddle before kick off. Photo: JUDE KEOGH

ORANGE Emus’ Blowes Clothing Cup winning streak has hit seven thanks predominantly to a first-half avalanche of points that set up a massive 67-24 victory over Mudgee.

Played at Endeavour Oval on Saturday, the hosts raced in seven tries – Nigel Staniforth, TJ Cunynghame, Tom Green, Tom Goolagong and Derek Thompson all bagged five pointers, while No.8 Scott McLean jagged two – to rack up a 43-7 advantage after the initial 40-minute period.

The pain continued into the second stanza too, with Keith Howarth and Adam Freeman scoring in the 44th and 51st minutes respectively to nudge the lead out to 55-7.

But, on the back of a the initial stages of a 10-1 second-half penalty count, the Wombats dug their way back into the contest, tight head David Birch scoring a hat-trick of tries in the second half that ensured the visiting Mudgee outfit left Endeavour Oval with a crucial bonus point.

Ending as they began, Emus scored a cracking final try right on fulltime.

On the counter attack, Carter Hirini chipped ahead for himself, won the race to the ball before soccering the gilbert and then brilliantly regathering.

He then out-paced Batties winger Brian O’Reilly to score a pearler of a 65-metre individual try.

It’s the seventh straight game Emus have racked up more than 40 points on their opposition, and despite leaving the clash with some injury concerns and a somewhat worrying bout of ill-discipline, co-coach Paul Ringland was chuffed with the result.

“We got a lot of injuries, had to make a lot of changes and there was some baffling refereeing,” he said, referring to the second half penalty count Emus were stung by.

“We’ll review the video but I’m sure we weren’t that worse of an offending team.

“Considering those circumstances we’re pretty happy.”

Still, they’re circumstances Ringland and co-coach Graydon Staniforth will be determined to avoid any repeat of leading into the finals.

All but obliterated in the opening 40 minutes, the Wombats’ second half physicality seemed to worry Emus, or at the very least aggravate a previously unflappable unit.

It’s a tactic Ringland knows will be coming at Emus each week from here until they play their last game in 2015.

“We’ve spoken about it a lot, and teams will continue to come at us like that because they know we’re a dominant team and they’ll try and get under our skin,” he said.

“We did react a bit, which is unfortunate but we got back to the job and scored a few tries late, which was good.”

Mudgee coach Neil McDonald admitted his side was stunned by the initial Emus rampage.

“We came back in the second half .. we were shell shocked though,” McDonald said.

“It’s a mind set thing we have to sort out, and to (Emus’) credit they made sure they penalised us for our mistakes.

“We missed too many tackles and against good sides you can’t do that.”

For Emus, Graydon Staniforth (hamstring), Tom Green (hip pointer), Matt Findlay (AC joint shoulder) and Nas Havealeta (head wound) are on the injured list while Rota Setu, Wombats’ most destructive player, left the field just after halftime with a groin issue.

“We’ll assess the injury and wait and see how he cools down,” McDonald added.

ORANGE EMUS 67 (Carter Hirini 2, Scott McLean 2, Nigel Staniforth, TJ Cunynghame, Tom Green, Tom Goolagong, Keith Howarth, Adam Freeman, Derek Thompson tries Nigel Staniforth 6 conv) def MUDGEE WOMBATS 24 (Dave Birch 3, Sam Schmidt tries; Josh Cookson 2 conv)

taken from http://www.centralwesterndaily.com.au/story/3266097/gallery-video-emus-first-half-onslaught-sets-up-big-win-over-wombats/?cs=104

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