Lower Clarence Magpies' Alex McMillan featured in the halves in their loss to the Casino Cougars.
Lower Clarence Magpies' Alex McMillan featured in the halves in their loss to the Casino Cougars. Leesa Kilduff

Missed opportunities and injury cruel Magpies against Casino

RUGBY LEAGUE: The Lower Clarence Magpies reserve grade side will be hoping the home ground advantage can lift them to their first win of the 2019 season when they host Marist Brothers Rams tomorrow.

Despite leading 14-10 against the Casino Cougars last weekend at half-time, injuries saw the Magpies lose their momentum in the second half Cougars running away with a 38-20 win.

After going down by a converted try early in the game, the new halves combination of Alex McMillan and Jacob Cameron-Clarke stepped up to settle the team, and saw the Magpies lead 14-10 at half-time.

The Magpies almost had the perfect start to the second half when after the break prop Ray Mercy broke the line from the kick-off and put TJ Kapeen under the posts, however the referee found a forward pass and the try was disallowed.

An injury forced the depleted Lower Clarence side to 12 on the field for 15 minutes, and the Cougars took full advantage of their opponents and ran in three unanswered tries to take the game away from the Magpies.

Club president John Elisaia said while the trip to Casino was not successful from a club point of view all squads on the day showed plenty of ticker.

"Special mention to senior players Scott Watson and Josh Horan who both returned to the field in an attempt to put bodies on the field despite been injured and also young Under-18 prop Caleb Cameron-Clarke who played the game before and still made an impact when on the field for the senior squad,” he said.

"Had we had the numbers and continued to hold our shape it may have been a different story.

"The boys can be proud of the effort and with an almost perfect first half and as they continue to fine tune and improve each week it is a reality that they can feature later in the season.”

This weekend the club faces Marist at home on Sunday, with Ladies League Tag kicking off at noon.



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