In a quirk of fate all three Tigers teams played the Cronulla Caringbah Sharks in the first round of elimination finals. The U9's played at Sutherland and both the U13's and O35's hosted home finals in TIGERTOWN which was welcomed by the strong local crowd. Please read the reports below in what was a cracking day of finals footy for the Tigers.
Tigers U9 Bronze 40 Cronulla Caringbah Sharks 18
In their best game of the season the U9's comprehensively defeated the Sharks 40-18 in their first finals appearance. The Tigers scored from their first set with Zac May getting over the line after good runs by Charlotte Dart and then Hayden Walker. Archer Brassington got the Tigers second using his pace to get around the defence. We thought Hayden Walker had grabbed the Tigers third but he wasn't clean when placing the ball down after running the length of the field. However, Zac May grabbed his second soon after and the Tigers finished the first quarter 16-0 ahead.
In the second quarter the Tigers scored first through Lachlan Couley who pulled off a unique move that bamboozled the Sharks defenders and put the Tigers ahead 22-0. The Sharks were finding it hard to get over the halfway line due to the ferocious tackling of Hudson Palmervale, Malachi Kane, Geordan Fairbairn-Raco and Oscar Allen. In the third quarter the Sharks lifted and got the first points of the quarter. The Tigers were looking nervous until Hayden Walker made an important relieving run that benefited Zac May, who put the Tigers up 28-6 just before the bell.
In the fourth quarter Aston Gibbons won the ball from the kick-off from a pin point kick. A couple of plays later he gathered the ball again and scored under the posts. The Sharks scored again to get the scores back to 34-6 before Aston Gibbons grabbed his second after running through and around the defenders and put the Tigers ahead 40-12. The Sharks scored again on the bell but the Tigers ended up winning 40-18. The Tigers conversions were superb today, kicking 6 from 7, which enable the Tigers to apply scoreboard pressure throughout the game.
Tigers U13 Bronze 30 Cronulla Caringbah Sharks 20
In a ding dong battle the Tigers defeated the Sharks in a high quality game that was full of endeavor and skill from both teams. The Tigers started well, getting through their sets and holding out the Sharks when they attacked. The Tigers scored first only for the Sharks to put one on themselves and then for the remainder of the half both teams went try for try with the Tigers taking a narrow half-time lead 14-12. Lewis Amesbury was having a game to remember, scoring all 3 tries in the first half and Leo Giovenco was damaging with the ball and opening up holes in the Sharks defence.
In the second half the Sharks went ahead for the first time in the game but this only stirred the Tigers to lift their game to a new level. Max Cooper was starting to assert himself on the game and was maneuvering the Tigers all over the park, Nathan Baldock was making tackle after tackle and the Tigers started to win the battle in the middle. The Tigers put on three quick tries, all scored by Lewis Amesbury and they went out to a 30-16 lead late in the second half. Hunter Loveday was keeping the Sharks danger player quiet and the Tigers forwards were cutting down the space that the Sharks had to work in. The Sharks did get a couple back before the bell but the Tigers claimed a well deserved 30-20 victory. Congratulations to the team on reaching the preliminary final next week against the Menai Roosters.
Tigers O35 Silver 6 Cronulla Caringbah Sharks 16
The Tigers bow out of the finals series with their heads held high. In a close game that the Tigers dominated for long periods they were unable to convert their weight of possession into points.The Tigers started strongly and forced a line drop-out in the early minutes. Good field possession saw the Tigers pushing for a try but a long clearing kick from the Sharks relieved the pressure and put them on the attack. Tony Faughey was energetic in the middle, Clinton Jones was always on the lookout for an intercept and Lloyd Maddison was getting off the defensive line and pressuring the Sharks. Despite the Tigers possession, the Sharks got the first points and then scored again to go out to a 10-0 lead. Jay Sykes, Gerome Lane and Grant May were solid in the middle and closing any gap that the Sharks tried to exploit.
The points sparked the Tigers into action and they started to put on some good moves. Steve Mason went close but was tagged in the act of putting the ball down and Chris Fellas had a couple of chances near the posts but was also tagged close to the line. Another try was chalked off for the Tigers with Will Barrios getting over the line but the pass was called forward. A penalty to the Tigers gave them good field position with a minute left and some neat interplay put Tyler Gibbons in a hole and he scored to get the scores back to 10-6 at half time.
All the momentum was with the Tigers in the second half and in the opening minutes, Jay Sykes put in a massive bomb close to the line, and Grant May rose highest to collect the ball and bang it over the try line, but it was ruled out for a Tigers for a knock on. More pressure for the Tigers resulted in another chance but the Tigers were unable to convert. Against the run of play the Sharks scored again with a neat play through hands and put the Sharks ahead 14-6. A penalty to the Sharks soon after gave them a 16-6 lead and effectively killed the game off. Well done Tigers in making the finals and adding a new dimension to the club. We are sure there will be greater improvement next year.
A Big Thank You to our 2023 sponsors, without your support we would not have a club and we appreciate you getting behind our teams.