Brahmans trio still in finals hunt
RUGBY LEAGUE: All three Whitsunday Brahmans teams are through to week two of the finals after the under-18s and reserve grade won their elimination finals on the weekend.
The Powered by Murphy reserve grade are through to week two of the finals after a 40-18 win in a fiery clash against Norths Devils.
The Brahmans had the advantage of the strong breeze in the opening half, but it was Norths who were first to score points in the opening minutes of the match.
The Brahmans were quick to hit back through centre Anselam Tabua. Tensions boiled over after a string of penalties to both teams and the referee sent a player from each team for 10 minutes in the bin.
A double to man of the match George Prior, as well as tries to Mitchell Whitton and James Coutts, saw the Brahmans take a handy 30-6 lead at the half-time break.
The second half started well for the Brahmans, with back rower Matt Lade crossing early to extend the lead. Some poor handling and back-to-back defensive sets allowed Norths to score two quick tries to take it to 34-18 late in the second half.
Ben Castley, who was celebrating his 21st birthday, was rewarded with a four-pointer close to full-time after his solid performance all game.
Front rower Kade Breen had a stellar effort in the pack. They now take on Magpies in the elimination semi-final, kicking off at 11am on Sunday.
The NQ Glass and Glazing under-18 Brahmans kept their premiership hopes alive with a 20-10 win over Wests Tigers.
The Brahmans started positively with big efforts all over the park, but poor ball security from the green team kept the opposition in the game. They went into the half-time break 10-10.
The Brahmans looked to dominate the Tigers early in the second half and set the tone for the remainder of the match. Taylor Jones and Liam Murphy combined to post the first points of the second half.
Rising local star Mitch Whitton sealed the Brahmans' victory, crossing with minutes left on the clock assisted by some Liam Murphy magic to seal the match.
Coach Justin Follet was pleased with the win.
"Everyone stuck to the game plan and gave 100% effort, which is very pleasing," he said.
"I'm so proud of the boys and they should also be proud of themselves."
All players had great games but man of the match honours went to Sam Burnett. This weekend the U18s take on the Sarina Crocodiles in an elimination final kicking off at 9am at the MJRL grounds.
After a well-earned week off following their minor premiership win, the Metropole Hotel A-grade Brahmans will take on Wests Tigers in the preliminary final at 3pm on Sunday. The winner will book themselves a spot in the grand final in a fortnight's time as well as enjoying a week off the following week.
All Brahmans supporters are urged to make the trip to Mackay this Sunday to cheer on your team as they charge deep into the 2016 final series.
Games start at 9am on Sunday.