Near-perfect day for the Dirty Reds
The Goulburn Dirty Reds capped off an almost perfect day at Poidevin Oval on Saturday with a comprehensive 59-7 win over Tuggeranong Vikings.
Earlier in the day, the Goulburn Women's side made their competition rugby debut on Poidevin Oval with a strong 34-0 win over Gungahlin and a narrow 15-10 loss to Easts, and the men's second grade side recorded a stunning 33-24 comeback win against Tuggeranong.
Saturday's round also marked Goulburn Rugby's Ladies Day in which the Club showed its appreciation to not only the women players and volunteers, but also the many women who make it pick up the extra workload at home while the men are at training or playing rugby.
The Goulburn firsts were diligent against a team they hadn't beaten before in the four years of the joined ACT / Monaro first division competition.
Notching up a 50 plus score in as many weeks, the firsts kept a low error count as they set to the task of denying the competition heavyweights of possession.
Goulburn took a 31-7 lead to the break and picked up where they left off. The pace slowed in the middle passage of the second half as a little lethargy crept in and Tuggeranong challenged to fight back into the game. But the Vikings were kept scoreless in the second half by Goulburn's potent defence, and a final Goulburn surge at the end added three more tries in the final ten minutes.
It was a confident and demonstrative win for Goulburn, picking the firsts up a bonus point win for more scoring at least four tries.
Jackson Reardon had a great day with the boot, kicking seven from nine attempts at conversion including two that took a few flakes of paint from the goal posts on their way through. Jordan Lees picked up a trifecta and new recruit Ben Cheetham picked up a brace of tries along with three best and fairest points and the players player award.
Best and fairest players for Goulburn were Ben Cheetham (3), Adam Lachlan (2), Michael McKillop (1) and Brad Clements (1).
Goulburn 57 (Jordan Lees 3, Ben Cheetham 2, Adam Lachlan, Michael McKillop, Matt Spratley, Simon Graves tries, Jackson Reardon 7 conversions) bt Tuggeranong 7 (Fotofili Namoa try, Federico Pitasi conversion).
The win installs Goulburn as equal competition leaders with Royals, who they'll play next weekend at Phillip Oval. The ladder is also subject to change as several teams have postponed their matches to be played at a later date.
Gutsy comeback for Dirty Twos
With 24 points already scored against them before the half-time break, things weren't looking so great for the Dirty Twos, but then they scored a try to be 24-7 down at half-time.
And then they scored another. And then another. And then another. And then another.
Over a period of around 40 minutes, Goulburn registered 33 unanswered points for the gutsy 24 win... their first against Tuggeranong in the combined ACT/Monaro competition.
One of the sideline staff referred to it as the gutsiest comeback they'd seen from the club, and it was certainly one of the better ones. It marked a complete reversal in form and emphasised the importance of possession and momentum.
In the first half, Tuggeranong couldn't lose the ball and couldn't stop scoring. In the second half they couldn't get it back and couldn't buy a try.
The match also marked the first win in their new roles for coach Abe Kara and assistant coach Tim Moule.
Best and fairest points for Goulburn went to Ben Todkill (3), Aiden Greaves (2), Peter Ward (1) and Curtis Flood (1) while Grant Mooney was voted players player.
Goulburn 33 (Ben Todkill, Aiden Greaves, Ben Naivaluvou, Brandon Courts, Mark Kaimoana tries, Courts four conversions) bt Tuggeranong 24 (Tom Leddy 2, Matt French, Niall Jacobsen tries, Ryan Slater 2 conversions).
No place like home for Dirty Reds women
After a number of sevens and tens tournaments, the Goulburn Women's side were ready and raring to run onto Poidevin Oval in the ACT pre-season women's 10s competition... and the wait was worth it.
In their two matches in the round robin on Saturday, the women notched up a seemingly effortless 34-0 win over Gungahlin, and a narrow 15-10 loss to Easts.
The Reds were never in doubt against Gungahlin, with tries scored by Ash Mewburn (2), Karly Lachlan, Sass Cudaj, Chloe Waddell and Hollie Deaton and with conversions by Mewburn and Waddell.
The second match of the day, against Easts, was a tougher affair and Goulburn trailed by 15-0 with just a few minutes left in the match. But never saying die, they bought back into the match with quick tries to Chloe Waddell and Kelsey Betts.
The halves in the women's games needed to be reduced by a minute after a late start earlier in the day, and if they'd had an extra minute to play with it might have resulted in a draw or a Goulburn win, but the narrow loss will nonetheless give the women something to work on before their next outing next weekend.
Best and fairest points across both matches went to Bella Sheen (3), Kelsey Betts (2) and Bridgette O'Connor.