By Geoff Newling

Gunnedah Bulldogs started well but couldn’t repeat their first half performance when the Kootingal Roosters over ran them 54-6 in their Group 4 round 12 clash at Gunnedah’s Kitchener Oval last weekend.

The Bulldogs trailed 10-6 at the halftime break but wilted in the second half as the Roosters ran away with the game.

“I was pretty happy at half time,” Bulldogs coach Mick Schmiedel told Group 4 Media.

“We stuck to our game plan and our first-half defence was pretty good. We forced Kooty into a few errors as well. We had some good moments and I thought we were half a chance at half time.

“Unfortunately, we went away from everything we had done well in the first half. They scored two quick tries in three minutes after half-time and the momentum shifted.

“Credit to Kooty though, they are a good side.”

Andy Endicott, Gunnedah’s ‘players’ player’ award winner and Reece Dixon were best for the Bulldogs, while Dylan O’Brien, normally a fullback or five-eighth, excelled at lock.

“We didn’t have a bad performer,” Schmiedel said.

“Just didn’t gel in the second half.”

He said the Bulldogs’ theme for the final two weeks of the G4 season will be “to have some fun and enjoy ourselves”.

For the Roosters it kept them in fifth place on the ladder, a point behind fourth-placed Werris Creek with two rounds remaining. Mark Sheppard thought winger McKye Davis-Tucknott was outstanding.

“He was our players’ player,” Sheppard said. “He stepped up and helped with the go-forward.

“Big Jacko Brookman was great and got our three points. He really lifted and played some big minutes. Josh Kevill and Johnny Seabrook were very good too. Johnny played in the middle, on the edge and at lock as well. Great having that versatility.

“Adam Murphy also did his job, coming off the bench.”

 Sheppard said the second half effort was much better and “everyone played well across the board”.

He also had praise for young Under 18 Blake Russell, who made his first-grade debut.

“He normally plays one or seven but played nine (hooker) for us in Kurt Hartmann’s absence and went really well.”

That Kootingal won all four grades at Gunnedah was also a highlight for Sheppard after the Under 18s won 20-12, the Ladies League Tag 30-4 and second grade 34-22.


First Grade: Kootingal 54 (Brayden Jerrard 2, Jackson Brookman, Johnny Seabrook 2, Leroy Livermore 2, Ethan Parry, Josh Kevill tries, Jerrard 6 goals) bt Gunnedah 6 (Jonathon Crowe try, Dylan O’Brien goal). Second Grade: Kootingal 34 (Adam Darlington 3, Robert O’Leary, David Toomey, Koen Rieri tries, Toomey 4 goals) bt Gunnedah 22 (Lewis Muller, Tyron Rankmore, Aiden King, Doohan Honess tries, Jared Heinrich 3 gls). Ladies League Tag: Kootingal 30 (Monique Corbett 3, Kynesha Fuller, Ashley Mackay, Abby Schmiedel tries, Kasey Fulwood 2, Corbett gls) bt Gunnedah 4 (Jacqui Jones try). Under 18: Kootingal 20 (Cooper Anderson 2, Jayden Bullock, Troy Hawkins tries, Brayden Mullen 2gls) bt Gunnedah 12 (Jack Mackay, Bailee Crowe tries, Crowe 2gls).

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