Bears sink while classy Pies fly high in season opener

Saavanah Bourke

A 36-20 loss wasn’t the result the UAA Burleigh Bears were chasing in their season opener against Souths Logan Magpies on Sunday afternoon.

An almost drowned Davies Park saw the Bears struggling to stay afloat, while the classy home side rose to the occasion.

“The other team played better there is no doubt about it,” Bears coach Rick Stone said.

“They were more controlled in the wet than we were and their playmakers managed the game better than we did.

“As a team we didn’t quite combine and build the pressure that we we’re looking for.”

An early injury to Bears fullback Troy Leo shook the side, throwing a spanner in the balance of their attack.

“He had a collision and fell awkwardly in the early minutes of the game,” Stone said.

The solution resulted in Guy Hamilton shifting to fullback, while Kurtis Rowe moved to the wing.

“For a bloke (Guy Hamilton) that hasn’t trained with us at fullback before, he did a really good job there and I was happy with his performance.”

It’s not the return Leo had in mind, the Bears veteran has been on the sideline for almost two years after recovering from a previous ACL injury.

“We’re not quite sure how bad (Troy) Leo is. We’ll have a better indication when he goes for scans tomorrow morning.”

Tied up at 20 all shortly after half time was the perfect chance for the Bears to claw ahead, instead, back to back errors combined with poor defence through the middle was the ultimate undoing.

“I am most disappointed with that,” Stone said.

“Our middle defence is something we pride ourselves on in the past and we know we need to improve massively if we want to be successful next week.”

That will be against the Mackay Cutters on Saturday afternoon at Pizzey Park.

“It’s a tough competition and one thing they have to realise is they’ve got to bring their best performance if they want to win games.”

While it’s a disappointing start to the season for the Bears, it’s a platform to grow from in the upcoming weeks. 

“A few boys will walk away from that game disappointed with their own individual performance and they know they need to be better if they want to win games and be successful in the future.”

Weekly Game Results

Big day for Bears

The Burleigh Bears have taken out the Burleigh 9’s competition with a thrilling 22-20 win over the Southern Dingoes

The Bears u19 women defeated Ipswich 60-6.

While the Mal Meninga Cup stay undefeated with a 44-16 win over Ipswich.

Bears ready to rumble for annual 9s

Bears ready to rumble for annual 9s

Saavanah Bourke

Saturday’s annual 9 A Side tournament will see Pizzey Park play host to 15 games across the afternoon, where eight teams will battle it out for $7000 worth of prize money.

With the Gold Coast A Grade season still more than two months away, Bears A Grade coach Matt Foster said it’s the perfect chance for players to put their four months of pre-season training into practise.

“It’s been a very long pre-season for us, so something like a 9s comp is good fun and a great way to get back into a bit of footy,” Foster said.

His side will be feeling the pressure, last year’s reining champs no doubt looking to defend their title.

“It is a very competitive competition and I’d expect the same thing this year,” Foster said.

And with a young lineup, their chances of doing so are looking promising.

“Everyones always in it to win it,” he said.

“You’ve only got nine players across the park so there’s a whole lot more energy expended.

“We’ve got quite a young side so I could imagine they are going to have a fair bit of energy out on the field.”

But the key message for his players is to just enjoy playing footy.

“It’s almost like going back to backyard footy when your growing up.

“I want them to just enjoy playing with the extra space and see what they can do.”

And despite the impressive amount of prize money up for grabs, Foster said that doesn’t play part in their motivation to win.

“To be honest none of our boys have even asked me if they are going to get any money for playing the comp.

“The good thing is the boys just want to get out onto the park and play footy.

“It’s not so much about the money, it’s just about the experience.”

Burleigh’s A Grade team aren’t the only Bears lining up, the Hasting Deering Colts and Reserve Grade are also set to take the field, alongside teams from Southport, Tugun, Lismore and a combined Gold Coast Indigenous side.

All the action is set to kick off from Pizzey Park at 12pm, with finals to take place at 6.45pm.

Tickets are available at the gate, adults $7, concession $5 and children under 16 free.

A Grade

  1. Taine Tuaupiki
  2. Regan Muir Ogle
  3. Will Evans
  4. Latrell Howe
  5. Lofi Khan Pereira
  6. Connor Tioa
  7. Cole Geyer
  8. Isaac Fa’asuamaluai
  9. Ben Valeni
  10. Lochlyn Sheldon
  11. Brett Stratton
  12. Jake Gleeson
  13. Reece O’Brien
  14. Andrew Scougall
  15. JJ Massive
  16. Shaq Gafa

Bears claw back in high quality trial

Saavanah Bourke

Saturday nights clash between the UAA Burleigh Bears and Tweed Heads Seagulls gave Intrust Super Cup players an insight into just how fast a game of NRL is.

The combination of 14 full time Gold Coast Titans players spread across both sides, plus the new six again rule, made for a high quality, fast paced trial at Pizzey Park.

An impressive first half performance from the Seagulls had the Bears trailing 12-6 into the break, but two second half tries within a 10 minute time frame from Bears winger Andre Niko sealed the deal for their 22-18 victory.

The Bears started just as good as they finished, centre Troy Leo opening the scoring in the 21st minute of play.

It wasn’t long before the Seagulls fought back, a break down the field and a pass out to winger Ryland Jacobs saw them even the score.

An unforced error from the Bears was all the momentum Seagulls playmaker Toby Sexton needed, finding his way under the posts as the half time hooter sounded. 

The start of the second half saw the Seagulls waste no time extending the lead with new Titans recruit Herman Ese’ese making his way over the line.

It wasn’t long before the Bears clawed their way back from a 12 point deficit, winger Andre Niko scoring a double and evening up the score with 20 minutes remaining.

It wasn’t the only double of the night, Bears winger Troy Leo finding the line again, just two minutes before full time, securing the hard fought victory.

For Bears captain Luke Page, having six Titans players named among his side was the perfect advantage heading into Round 1.

“That was as good as any games going to get,” Page said.

“To have that game as a trial and see where we are at before Round one is great.”

Which is now less than two weeks away, as the Bears roster begins to mould into place.

“The injection of those quality players definitely helps our side if we can get them back over the next couple of weeks,” Bears coach Rick Stone said.

“If they continue to gel and spend some time with the boys it will be beneficial for everyone.”

The Intrust Super Cup season kicks off for the Bears on Sunday March 21, against Souths Logan Magpies at Davies Park.

Burleigh Bears 22 (Troy Leo 2, Andre Niko 2 tries; Josh Rogers 3 goals) def Tweed Heads Seagulls 18 (Ryland Jacobs, Toby Sexton, Herman Ese’ese tries; Toby Sexton 3 goals)

A Grade Burleigh 34 def Tweed 18

Colts Burleigh 36 def Tweed 28

Women Burleigh 16 def Tweed 8

Mal Meninga Cup Burleigh 38 def Souths Logan 28

Cyril Connell Cup Souths Logan 38 def Burleigh 8

Weekly Results


ISC Burleigh 22 def Tweed 18

A Grade Burleigh 34 def Tweed 26

Colts Burleigh 36 def Tweed 28

Women Burleigh 16 def Tweed 8

Mal Meninga Cup Burleigh 38 def Souths Logan 28

Cyril Connell Cup Souths Logan 32 def Burleigh 10