Devils outhustle Hunters

The National,Monday June 27th, 2016

THE Norths Devils continued their impressive run of recent form by downing the PNG Hunters 24-8 at Bishop Park yesterday.
The home side put in a strong defensive effort to restrict the Hunters to one try in the match while running in four of their own.
As he invariably is when the Devils post a win – half Todd Murphy was instrumental – setting up tries and also scoring the first to set his side on the path to victory.
The Hunters however had earlier scored the first points of the game with a penalty kick from captain Noel Zeming, pictured, within the opening five minutes of the match.
Zeming’s presence on the field was a surprise after initally pulling out of the game on Saturday with a niggling thumb injury that was supposed to be operated on this week.
However from there – the Devils were able to heap the pressure on the visitors, with Murphy swivelling over near the uprights following a great offload from prop Francis Molo.
They were nearly over again soon after when Murphy made a massive break down the right side – only for Harry Pondekas to drop the pass with the line beckoning.
Their next points came soon enough however, with Murphy again the catalyst – his pin-point kick to the left corner was collected by centre Luke Pollack who scored his side’s second try.
A late penalty goal – slotted by Murphy – gave the Devils a 14-2 lead at halftime.
The Hunters – who for most of the first half had resorted to more conventional one-out runs – added some attacking flair to start the second and were instantly rewarded.
A Bland Abavu tap-back from a Watson Boas kick found the arms of Adex Wera who charged through to score what was to be the Hunters only try of the match.
Zeming’s conversion brought the Hunters to within 14-8; but that was to be the end of their point scoring for the afternoon.
With the try-scoring proving much more difficult against a more committed Hunters side in the second half, the Devils kicked another penalty go out beyond a converted try. However, with 10 to go in the match – the Devils shook off the visitors with two tries, with firstly Jarrod Dodd down the left side and then Martin Love-Henry showing strength to go over – thanks to a great run for Jayden Berrell.
Michael Marum’s men face another gut check next week when they travel down to New South Wales to face the  Tweed Heads Seagulls at  Piggabeen.
Results: Q-Cup Round 16 – Sat, June 25: Easts Tigers 26 Northern Pride 24, Townsville Blackhawks 22 Sunshine Coast Falcons 12, Central Queensland Capras 20 Burleigh Bears 44; Sun, June 26: Redcliffe Dolphins 36 Mackay Cutters 28, Tweed Heads Seagulls 30 Souths Logan Magpies 48, Norths Devils 24 SP PNG Hunters 8. – Queensland Rugby League