NSW Schools: Joeys score late to upset Scots and crack GPS premiership race wide open
Joeys are just one win away from claiming their first GPS premiership in 11 years after scoring a try in the 78th minute to claim a 38-34 upset win over defending premiers Scots at Bellevue Hill.
The visitors trailed 34-24 with 10 minutes remaining but set up a grand stand finish after the Joeys forwards pounced on a loose ball at the base of the ruck and scored in the 76th minute to reduce the deficit to just three points.
Joeys then attacked from a scrum inside their own half with two minutes remaining. Centre Vince Creagh through a lovely cutout ball to put Liam Scolari in space, before the winger chipped ahead.
The ball bounced almost on a right angle, past four Scots defenders and back into the hands of Creagh, who dived over to seal victory.
Played in front of a huge crowd in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs, the Scots’ forwards looked in ominous form early and kept their side on the front foot.
Flanker Brett Wellington showed plenty of pace to score his side’s first try in the corner, while the Scots’ maul also wreaked havoc.
After Joeys received a yellow card, the home side scored from a five metre line out and again minutes later, when halfback Seb Strang scooted over on the back of another dominant Scots’ maul, as the home side went to the break up 20-12.
Lock Hamish Moore then broke a tackle and scored to extend Scots’ lead early in the second half, before Joeys began to fight back.
Liam Scolari gathered a bounce pass and showed good speed to score in the corner, before fellow Joeys’ winger Aiden Peterson split the defence from a well worked centre field play and scored untouched to reduce the deficit to 10 points.
Scots No.6 Brett Wellington looked to have sealed victory for the home side when he scored his second try of the afternoon, but Joeys weren’t done yet.
The visitors scored twice in the final four minutes to stun the Bellevue Hill locals and set up a bumper final round next weekend.
Following Kings’ surprise loss to Newington, Joeys, Scots and Kings are equal on six competition points each heading into round five.
Joeys will claim the GPS premiership if they can beat Riverview next weekend and will share the title with the winner of the Scots v Kings clash.
If Joeys lose, the winner of Scots and Kings will claim the outright premiership. If Joeys win and Scots and Kings draw, Joeys will claim the outright premiership.
GPS Round 4 1st Grade Results:
St Josephs 38 (Tries: Creagh 2, Scolari, Paterson, Wilson, Robinson. Goals: Gibbs 4.) defeated Scots 34 (Tries: Wellington 2, Zylstra, Moore, Strang. Goals: Savala 3, Penalty Goals: Savala 1.)
Riverview 33 (Tries: Albert 2, Bell 2, Dutaliis. Goals: Easy 4.) defeated Shore 10 (Tries: Harding 2.)
Newington 42 (Tries Koula 4 Weekes Vei Goals Vei 3 PG Vei 2) defeated Kings 32 (Tries: Lefevbre, Gunstone, Suaalii, Penisini. Goals: Minogue 3. Penalty Goals: Minogue 2.)
GPS 1st Grade Ladder
- Scots – 3 wins, 1 loss: 6 pts
- Kings – 3 wins, 1 loss: 6 pts
- Joeys – 3 wins, 1 loss: 6 pts
- Riverview – 2 wins, 2 losses: 4 pts
- Newington – 1 win, 3 losses: 2 pts
- Shore – 0 wins, 4 losses: 0 pts