BATHURST HIGH’S COMEBACK FALLS SHORT AS DUBBO WINS DECIDER
|Bathurst High School played well in the Uni Shaield grand final at Shark Park (Photo : OurFootyMedia)
A second half comeback wasn’t enough for Bathurst High School as they went down to Dubbo College Senior Campus 38-16 in their University Shield final at Toyota Park yesterday.
Bathurst High went into the decider quietly confident of success, but they were caught out by a determined Dubbo side who raced to a 16-0 lead at half-time.
The deficit was reduced to just six early in the second half, but despite the momentum swinging in Bathurst’s favour, Dubbo made the most of some fortunate opportunities to blow the gap out again and secure the win.
“It was a bit of a bugger but the boys can keep their heads up, it was a good effort,” Bathurst coach Des Crawford said.
“Dubbo came out and dominated us in the first half. The boys worked hard to get back into the game, they got back to within a converted try and had all the momentum, but Dubbo had a couple of 50-50 calls go their way and they scored a couple of tries which put us to bed.
“The boys were playing well to get back into the game and we thought we were getting the better of them, but it wasn’t to be.”
Crawford praised his forwards for working their way back into the game after they were monstered in the first half.
“Brodie Cheshire was one of the best today and Jason Roche was strong as well. They really stood up for us,” he said.
“We knew that being 16 points down, we had to come out and lift our game or we would get blown away and we did that.
“It was on the back of the forwards that we got into the game. After Blake Seager’s try, that was when we lifted our game. We were lifting our game and we were controlling the ball better.”
Dubbo had already beaten Bathurst once this year in their Astley Cup clash and Crawford said the University Shield final had a similar sort of feel about it.
“It was one of those typical Dubbo High and Bathurst High games. They just got the edge on us,” he said.
Bathurst High were at a disadvantage for the match with the majority of their squad also playing for Bathurst Panthers in the Group 10 under 18s grand final on Sunday. They won that match against Orange CYMS 28-12, but then had to back up just 48 hours later for this game. Dubbo play in the Group 11 competition that finished a week earlier.
“It was an incredible effort by the boys and they should be very proud of it. To finish second in the state is a great effort. They had to back up after playing the Group 10 grand final, but to their credit the boys all put in,” the coach said.
The experience of playing at Toyota Park, the home ground of the Cronulla Sharks, was a good one for Bathurst, according to Crawford.
“It was very good. It was still a very large crowd that stuck around to watch us even though ours was the last of five games and it was a very good atmosphere. The boys were able to go over to their families and the school afterwards,” he said.
“It is the last game for some of these players and despite losing today, they have had an incredible run. It might be a bit disappointing not to go out with a win, but they have been a credit to the school and we wish those Year 12 boys who are moving on the best of luck for their future.”
DUBBO COLLEGE SENIOR CAMPUS 38 defeated BATHURST HIGH SCHOOL 16 (Blake Seager, Riccie Arriola, Doug Hewitt tries; Andrew Mendes 2 goals)