Bears Claim win over Wynnum

Kevin Braysher

The Essential Coffee Burleigh Bears have outlasted the Wynnum Manly Seagulls 26-18 in a slugfest at Pizzey Park.

The top four battle delivered a spectacle worthy of their ladder positions with a Jesse Arthars double and two massive second half plays from fullback Kurtis Rowe proving the difference.

With their fourth victory of the year the Bears now move into third place on the ladder after six rounds.

“The really good part of that victory comes from the fact that we beat a really good side who I think are probably a top four side this year,” Bears coach Jimmy Lenihan said of beating the Seagulls.

“We’ve probably been a bit stuttered this year with the way we’ve been performing and coming up against Wynnum forced us to focus a lot this week and it’s just pleasing to put in a good performance.”

Burleigh got away to a remarkable start, with Jesse Arthars charging through a gap and stepping his way around two defenders in the backfield to score an electric try in just the second minute of the game.

Arthars, already the competition’s leading try-scorer, made it an early double in the 18th minute when he stood up his opposite man for pace on the right hand side of the field, before weaving his way back under the posts to score his 7th try of the season.

Despite the poor start, Wynnum Manly were resilient and started turning the tide late in the first half.

The result was a pair of tries for back-row partners Alex Barr and Maitu Love-Henry to bring the scores level.

A Jamal Fogarty penalty goal on the stroke of halftime gave the Bears a two-point lead at the break.

The second half started in similar fashion to the first half, with the Bears scoring an electric try just two minutes after the resumption of play.

This time it was Kurtis Rowe who sliced through the defence on the right-hand side of the field, before digging back infield to score next to the posts.

The Seagulls remained in touch with a Mitch Cronin try from dummy half in the 50th minute, before another scintillating run from Kurtis Rowe setup Troy Leo in the corner.

That try gave the Bears an 8-point lead which they held until the death despite repeated Wynnum Manly raids in the final 20 minutes.

Five-eighth Dylan Phythian and back-rower Jacob Hind both failed to finish the game with separate HIA issues and will have time against them as they look to line up against the Mackay Cutters next Thursday.

Earlier in the day the Bears Mal Meninga Cup side finished their season with a 23-22 win while the Colts continued their run of form with a 50-20 victory.

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