Sunday afternoon’s 50-10 loss against the Brisbane Tigers at Totally Workwear Stadium is one the Burleigh Bears will want to forget in a hurry.
It was a horror start for the Bears and a fantastic one for the home side, with six Burleigh errors within the first half gifting the Tigers the opportunity to strike while their momentum was hot, leading 26-0 after the first 40 minutes.
Match: Tigers v Bears
Round 3 -
Venue: Totally Workwear Stadium, Brisbane
An early injury to Bears centre Andre Niko didn’t help their case, forcing a reshuffling of positions which has also been affected by some late player inclusions.
“There was a couple of things that had us not as well prepared as we could of been,” Bears captain Luke Page said.
“It’s hard to form combinations when people drop in and out of the (Gold Coast) Titans.
“(But) we had too many errors and penalties against us, which snowballed our momentum."
The halftime message from Bears coach Rick Stone to "play fast, flat football to stop the Tigers momentum" failed to take eventuate, as their point scoring blitz continued into the second half.
The Bears drought was finally broken at the 54 minute mark, when a cross-field kick from Guy Hamilton saw Cory Denniss claim their first four points.
Denniss had his double after Beau Fermor charged up field, setting up his centre to score again.
But that’s where points dried up for the Bears, and the home side's class shone thorugh, claiming their first victory of the season and making a statement that they’ll be ones to watch in this year’s competition.
Dean Ieremia scored a hat-trick and the the Hastings Deering player of the match, while Will Samuel scored a double.
The Melbourne Storm contingent for the Tigers all pitched in, with Marion Seve strong in the centres, as was Brenko Lee on his return from injury.
After disappointing performances in their opening two round where they had conceded 70 points and only put 10 on the board, the Tigers showed what they were capable of.
Tigers hooker Aaron Booth said the difference in their performance today came down to stronger defence and completing sets.
“We didn’t start the year as well as we wanted to,” Booth said.
“We haven’t been holding the ball in the last couple of weeks and that was the biggest difference today."
Next weekend, the Bears will be looking for redemption as they return home next Saturday to take on the Tweed Heads Seagulls.
Match: Seagulls v Bears
Round 4 -
Venue: Piggabeen Sports Complex, Tweed Heads
For their Round 4 match, the Tigers will face the Jets in Ipswich.
Match: Jets v Tigers
Round 4 -
Venue: North Ipswich Reserve, Ipswich