Mason magic has Roosters crowing
CALLIOPE Roosters are the Gladstone and Districts Rugby League back-to-back premiers after a pulsating 27-22 win against minor premiers Wallabys.
Roosters youngster Mason Collette turned the game on its head when captain Chad Gilmour feigned a pass to then find Collette who did the rest when he evaded Wallabys defenders to seal the deal with three minutes left.
Wallabys looked the better side after the first two minutes and got the opening brace of tries.
Mick Hamilton used his brute strength which led to Wallabys' first try courtesy of Jamie Powell who found open space after the ball was kicked high.
Another penalty by Calliope Roosters led to a new set for Wallabys and the danger bells were in full toll for the Roosters.
Wallaby speedster Coen Horan slid through for his team's second try and Roosters were struggling to keep up.
Powell produced another blistering run on the final set which almost yielded another try.
Geoff Brown smashed his way for valuable metres gained for the Roosters in the front half.
Ill-discipline from Wallabys Nathan Millard and Horan as well as Rooster Hayden Mulder were sin-binned for 10-minutes following a melee.
Collette put on an inspirational smother on a Matt Baker kick and Calliope's Mitchell Younger pounced on the lose ball to open the Roosters' account.
The game went up a gear as Calliope's Dylan Craig put on a brutal tackle on Luke Miller and Wallabys Jake Gower was gang tackled which locked the ball in the Rooster's try line.
Wallabys Jason Tuiasau was sent off after another melee.
But perhaps one of the most crude acts was when Wallabys' Willy Waia followed through with his foot shortly after Jack Greenwood produced an inspirational try.
The resultant stoppage in play had Marley Brown Oval bursting at the seams and the game momentarily out of control as Waia provoked the crowd on his way to join Horan on the sidelines for the remainder of the game.
Chad Gilmour scored a conversion and resultant penalty to put Roosters 14-12 ahead.
It was only fleeting because Wallabys captain Matt Baker reached over the try-line to have his team in front at half-time.
Calliope began the second half in stunning fashion when Nick Healey found space to put Roosters ahead.
However the theme of unpredictability continued when Hamilton barged his way to have scores level again.
Baker's conversion attempt hit the post and scores were locked away at 20-20 with 20-minutes left.
Moments after Millard was sent off a second time, Collette booted a field goal to put Roosters one-point in front.
But Wallabys responded when Powell was awarded a penalty and his accurate kick put his side ahead.
Josh Blatch then put in the big yards with just two minutes on the clock, but Gilmour and Collette combined for one of the great finishes in a grand final.
Calliope Roosters 27 d Wallabys 22