Mouth-watering semi-finals

BERRY-Shoalhaven Heads Magpies' plucky late-season charge to make the VB South Coast Rugby League semi-finals has come to naught.

Meanwhile, Albion Park-Oak Flats Eagles have set up a mouth-watering major semi-final clash with minor premiers Gerringong Lions after the opening round of the 2012 semi-finals last weekend.

Surprisingly, big margins featured in both semi-finals, premiers Warilla-Lake South Gorillas scoring eight tries to one in their 38-6 win over the Magpies, while the Eagles flew in for 10 tries in their 58-4 victory over Kiama Knights.

The first half of both games were hard-fought, the Gorillas scoring twice to lead 12-0. The Eagles scored three converted tries to one to lead 18-4, but the floodgates opened in the last 20 minutes as the class and teamwork of the home side came to the fore.

After dominating the competition from round one, Gerringong Lions will host the side many consider the most likely to play the Lions in the decider on September 16 at Centenary Field.

The undefeated Lions will face a very much in-form Eagles. The Park have run in half-century scorelines in their past two games.

One of the best clashes will be at five-eighth where Pat Cronin (Lions) will go up against Gary Breakspear, while fullbacks Joel Roberts (Lions) and the "zip-zip" man Danny Sartori will provide plenty of highlights.

The Eagles are sure to try to out-muscle their Gerringong opponents. The skill of the Lions' back-row of Ryan Staples, Michael Brown and Brad Davidson will no doubt play an important role in the match's outcome.

Sunday's minor semi-final will pit reigning premiers Warilla Gorillas against the Knights at Kiama Showground. Knights coach Simon Foster faces the task of rebuilding the confidence of his side after last Sunday's thumping at the hands of the Eagles.

Kiama will have to take on the Gorillas pack, led by Andrew Diomei, Ryan Johnston and Luke Roberts, head-on if they are to end Warilla's season. Coach Linken Hutchinson and centre Tyson Brown were unstoppable last weekend, with seven tries between them.

Marc Laird, Jade Lucas, Chris Bowers, Jake McDonald, Tom Atkins and Kieran Poole have been leading lights and will be keen to earn a spot in the final.

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