THE Kiama Knights continue their solid 2017 campaign as they produced a hard-fought 36-18 victory over a highly competitive Milton-Ulladulla Bulldogs side at Kiama Showground on Sunday.
The Knights maintain their spot in the top four. Coach Matt O’Brien was impressed with his side’s effort.
“It was a very physical game and we just got make sure that we tighten our defence up a little bit more before our clash with Warilla-Lake South next weekend but overall I was very happy that we came away with the two points today,” Knights coach Matt O’Brien said.
The Knights got off to a perfect start as a converted Ethan Ford scored underneath the black dot to give his side an early 6-nil.
Kiama back-rowers Travis Poole and Vaughan Thistlethwaite were both assisted by a clever short passing game from halves Blake Richard and Cameron Vazzolar as Kiama extended their lead to 16-nil.
The Bulldogs hit back in fine style as a barnstorming Paul Ardler was too hard to stop from five metres out of Kiama’s goal line. Milton trailed by 12. On the back of a brilliant 60 metre line break from Oliver Powell, the Knights scored off the very next play through Matt Morris as Kiama went into the break with 20-4 lead.
Both Kiama and Milton showed a lot of improvement in the second period as each team was willing to chance their arm in attack.
Ethan Ford secured his second hat-trick on home soil this season including one try from inside his own half. Cameron Cornell was assisted by an excellent right side attacking movement. Vazzalor slotted one goal from three attempts.
The visitors applied pressure on the Kiama defence and secured terrific tries of their own through Paul Ardler who secured his double, a hard running Lepani Waqua who converted his own effort and Shaun Deaves who received a freakish offload from Harry Myers.
At full-time the Knights got over the line by 36-18. For the home side Travis Poole, Vaughan Thistlethwaite, Cameron Whittaker, Josh Toohey and Cameron Vazzolar were impressive while Paul Ardler, Lepani Waqua, Shaun Deaves and Geoff Johnson fought hard for the Bulldogs.