Gladstone resists Colts fight back at Rocky match on weekend
A YOUTHFUL Colts outfit impressed their coach Frank Busby with their tenacious effort against a slick Gladstone team in round five of the CQRU A-grade competition.
Gladstone travelled to Rockhampton to face Colts at home and narrowly escaped a late comeback by the hosts to win 34-28.
Colts trailed at the halfway mark, when Gladstone came out after the break and punched out three tries.
"They got away from us at that point ... Gladstone are a smart side; they're big and they run hard," Busby said.
Gladstone's forward pack towered over the Colts forwards, but the hosts played well up front in patches, helping lay the platform for a very strong final quarter where Colts ran in two late tries.
They nearly scored a third in the final minute of the match but Gladstone held them out to avoid an upset.
"They're a very young side. The tight five have an average age of 20 ... I was very happy with how they stepped up," he said.
The backline was in form, with flyhalf Denzel Mooney crossing the chalk twice for Colts, while fullback Ryan Beatson found good position, and attacked strongly.
In a year in which the club is rebuilding, Busby had nothing but praise for his young charges who stood up to a side which the coach predicted would still be standing at the business end of the season.
"I was very impressed by Gladstone," he said. "They will most definitely be there at the end of the season if they can keep all of their players. They are one of the strong sides this year ... I would say up with Brothers."
Brothers were undefeated this year until Saturday's match at University when a depleted side faced the students and lost 41-17.
Always tough to beat at home, Dawson Valley was too strong for Frenchville at Moura, defeating the visitors 34-10.
The weekend's results caused a reshuffle in the standings, with University taking a turn at the top and last year's premiers Dawson Valley moving into fourth.
This Saturday, Central Queensland Brahmans play Wide Bay at Rugby Park, at 6.30pm.
Frenchville and Colts A-grade sides will play the curtain-raiser to the main game, kicking off at 5pm.
On Sunday, the remaining round six A-grade fixtures have Dawson Valley playing Blackwater at 3.30pm and Gladstone face University at 5pm. Both games will be played at Rugby Park.
A-grade: Gladstone 34 def Colts 28; University 41 def Brothers 17; Dawson Valley 34 def Frenchville 10. Reserve grade: Brothers 38 def University 0; Dawson Valley 26 def Frenchville 20; Mt Morgan 37 def Colts 8.