WHEN a rugby league team is filled with young players the enthusiasm can be too much for its opposition. Easts proved youthful energy can be hard to combat when the majority of its line-up was from the Under-18 in the 32-28 win over Isis at Salter Oval.
Easts are on the comeback trail from an injury-induced horror stretch that included a 92-0 thumping by Wallaroos and leading the way is its young brigade.
Its A-grade team had nine U18 players in it and despite the pressure Isis's older, and more experienced players exerted towards the end of the game, each one of them stood up and returned whatever was thrown at them.
For two of the players in the four-point win their day in Magpies' colours started at 11am in the U18 game, followed by reserve grade and then A-grade. Baidon Cooper and Brock Dawes played 240 minutes of league and deserved the win they were part of to finish the day.
After playing two games the 17-year-old centre said he thought his day was over but was excited to get the call up for his A-grade debut and scoring a try made a tough day better.
"I didn't really know I was going to play until 40 minutes before the game. I was asked if I still had my gear," Cooper said.
"It was good to score a try because it was pretty close - it was a good feeling."
Cooper's try came at a pivotal moment in the game when Isis made a charge and the two points his team earns from the win was vital to keep its season alive. He said the difference between the two teams was Easts ability to defend its line when it was under pressure.
In some games with one team leading by a long way the intensity is lost but thanks to some big hits by Waves prop Dominic Tauae there was some action for the fans to enjoy as the game finished.
In Maryborough Wests came up against a tough Wallaroos outfit. Wallaroos led 14-10 at half-time but stretched its advantage after the break to record a 42-32 win.
Games this week are: Isis v Brothers (in Childers Saturday); Waves Tigers v Easts; Wests v Hervey Bay.
Easts 32 (C Stibbards, J Marschke, K Laybutt, R Larsen, C Gazzard, B Cooper tries; K Laybutt, Z Bainbridge 2 goals) d Isis 28 (N Sullivan 2, J Rowan, T Broadhurst, J Bryant tries; A O'Donnell 4 goals)
Brothers 54 (J McCrea 2, M Gaul, A Dempsey, N Moore, A Cross, B Holdsworth, D Blackman, J Turnbull, J Pope tries; N Moore 7 goals) d Waves Tigers 16 (N Jones, T Tupou, K Swallow tries; B McKeown 2 goals)
Wallaroos 42 (R Gela 2, D Gillen, D Ball, S Hutchins, E Booth, G Major, B Davies tries; R Gela 3, A Beatty 2 goals) d Wests 32 (B Pfeffer 2, D Maru, K Chapman, W Bowie, B Magala tries; D Maru, B Page 2 goals)
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