Tigers tame Cougars
Illawarra Mercury 01/06/2014
The Tigers produced some classy touches at crucial times to see off what was undoubtedly the Cougars's best performance of the year and earn the 30-20 victory.
"We didn't really have the attitude to play against a first grade side. In saying that we came down here, got the job done and enough was enough," Tigers coach Ryan Powell said.
"I guess you can't be on every week and today was one of those days but we were still good enough to get the job done, so credit to the boys for hanging in there."
Powell credited a disappointing loss to Wests in round four with sparking his side's run of form that's seen them beat Collegians, Dapto and Thirroul ahead of the victory over Corrimal, which sets up a blockbuster clash this Saturday with the Devils at Rex Jackson Oval.
"I don't think the boys will have any dramas getting up for next week," Powell said.
The Tigers were without regular on-field general Jarrod Boyle, who missed the match with a niggling groin injury, but it didn't stop them scoring points down their left edge with Azan Turoa producing a deft flick pass for Chris Lewis to open the scoring after nine minutes.
Halfback Eamon Hillen scored soon after to extend the lead to 12-0 before Corrimal seized momentum on the back of some uncharacteristically poor ball control from the Tigers.
Despite having the bulk of field position and possession, the Cougars couldn't produce points and the Tigers shot further ahead through centre Jordan Tencate, who scored in the right corner for a 16-0 lead.
Just as it looked like their strong first half would go unrewarded, George Lolo, who was a constant menace to the Tigers' left-edge defence, barged his way over as the half-time siren sounded to narrow the gap at 16-6.
Lewis scored his second try immediately following the resumption and when Turoa produced yet another flick pass after fielding a kick for Brock Gilmour to score, the result seemed in the bag for the Tigers at 26-6.
Corrimal, however, stormed back into the match on the back of Lolo's second try and when Tigers fullback Jason Raper failed to field a Shannon Crook bomb, Cougars winger Chad English picked up the scraps to make a game of it at 26-16.
With time winding down Hillen sealed the result when he grubbered for himself close to the line to push the margin out to 30-16.
Cougars prop Jacob Hind, who was close to best on ground, scored a late consolation try.
"I was pretty happy with the effort. Every week we put a fair effort in," Cougars caretaker coach Rick Higgins said.