ACROSS The Waves continued its ascent up the Bundaberg Women's Rugby League ladder with a 22-12 defeat of Wests at the weekend.
Coach Leonie Stables said her team's third straight win should serve as a warning to competition leader Hervey Bay.
“We started the season a little bit slowly and had a few problems we had to iron out, but we're really coming into our own now,” she said.
“With the level of football the girls have been bringing to the field lately, I think with some more on-field experience they're going to be able to match it with any team in the competition.”
Across The Waves ran on to the field weakened by the absence of key playmakers, centre Christine Chapman and prop Casey-Leigh Eland, due to injury.
However, Natalie Gala was a revelation at halfback, crossing the line four times and helping her sister, winger Alana Gala, to an important second-half try.
Wests had plenty of possession in the game and created good attacking opportunities.
However, they struggled to burst through a solid Across The Waves defensive line led by winger Jessica Maddern.
Stables said the win showed how a team of tackle-shy beginners had been transformed into a hardened league team of players willing to put their bodies on the line.
“Defence has been absolutely sensational and it's been a collective effort right across the board,” she said.
“There's a bit of mongrel in the girls that we've been able to bring out.
“It's really starting to show on the field.”