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Sep 23, 2016 - Panthers/Wayde Egan into Grand Final
Former Lithgow Storm junior Wayde Egan will play in the Grand Final for Penrith Panthers in the NRL's U/20 Competition, The NYC Cup.
The NYC Panthers have powered their way into the 2016 Holden Cup Grand Final with a 32-16 victory over North Queensland Cowboys at Allianz Stadium on Friday.
Panthers NYC coach Cam Ciraldo made a late adjustment to his side with Wayde Egan moved into starting hooker and Soni Luke dropping to the bench.
The defending champions looked set for a comfortable win after they raced out to an 18-0 lead inside the opening quarter of the game, but their passage to the NYC grand final was only secured six minutes from full-time when Daniel Brown punished some soft North Queensland defence from a scrum to sprint 80 metres to score.
The Cowboys were dealt a huge blow before kick-off with star fullback Kalyn Ponga withdrawn from the squad as cover for Kane Linnett in the NRL side.
Their cause wasn't helped when Nick Lui Toso was forced off just before half-time with a knee problem and then Marcus Jensen was helped from the field after 50 minutes with a foot injury to severely blunt their threat in attack.
It took just five minutes for the Panthers to assert their dominance when skipper Oliver Clark charged onto an inside ball from Dean Blore to barge over next to the posts.
Wayde Egan should have extended Penrith's lead five minutes later when he caught the Cowboys napping on the last tackle but dropped the ball over the line in the process of scoring.
Luck looked to have eluded the Panthers soon after when some quick thinking from flashy fullback Dylan Edwards saw him streak clear from a penalty tap only for Cowboys speedster Gideon Gela-Mosby to reel him in 10 metres short.
It mattered little for the minor premiers as Cowen Epere made it two from two for the front-rowers to bash his way over before Edwards sliced through from the following set to make it 18-0 after 18 minutes.
With the Panthers keeping up with the clock for the opening quarter of the game, North Queensland desperately needed a response so they turned to prop Nicholas Brown to somehow muscle his way over despite the attention of five would-be defenders to cut the gap to 12.
That would prove to be a minor blip on the radar for Penrith as Ratu Tuisese collected a brilliant offload from Christian Crichton to dive over in the left corner for his 22nd try of the season.
Not to be outdone, Cowboys winger Marcus Jensen showed why he is the leading try scorer in the NYC as he flirted with the sideline for 30 metres before touching down for his 27th four-pointer of 2016 to make it 22-10 at the break.
After a back-and-forth start to the second stanza, the game exploded into life in the 54th minute when Panthers centre Braidon Burns was sent to the sin bin for a professional foul that denied a certain North Queensland try.
From the ensuing set, Cowboys No.9 Brandon Smith burrowed over for his 18th try of the season to make it a six-point gap before Soni Luke was somehow denied an immediate hit-back at the other end.
North Queensland looked certain to draw level in the 68th minute when Gela-Mosby broke into open pastures, but instead of taking the tackle, opted for an audacious flick pass that was picked off by the Panthers.
It would prove to be a crucial play as a simple one-on-one miss at one end of the field led to an 80-metre try to Panthers winger Daniel Brown to put the game out of reach before Wayde Egan strolled over to put an exclamation point on the win.
Panthers 32 (Oliver Clark, Cowen Epere, Dylan Edwards, Ratu Tuisese, Daniel Brown, Wayde Egan tries; Dylan Edwards 4 goals) defeated Cowboys 16 (Nicholas Brown, Marcus Jensen, Brandon Smith tries; Cooper Bambling 2 goals) at Allianz Stadium. Half-time: 22-10 Panthers.
Sep 16, 2013 - Tigers 36 d. Storm 22 in Grand Final
The "Professionals" Lithgow Storm under 16s courageous finals campaign came to a disappointing end when they lost 36 - 22 to minor premiers Bloomfield Tigers in the Group 10 Grand Final played at Tony Luchetti Sports Ground.
Sep 12, 2013 - 16s Team Photo
Sep 9, 2013 - Storm Qualify For Grand Final
Fulltime - Lithgow Storm celebrate a hard fought victory
The "Professionals" Lithgow Storm have qualified for the Grand Final against Bloomfield after winning a tough encounter against 2011 & 2012 premiers St Pats by 16-14.
The Lithgow Storm club has three representatives in Saturday's Grand Finals with the u/12s playing Bathurst Panthers at 11 am and the u/15s (minor premiers) against Cowra Magpies at 2.10 pm before the u/16s play Bloomfield Tigers at 3.30 pm.
Sep 2, 2013 - Storm win Semi against Magpies
Nathan McAndrew reaches out for the game-winning try in the minor semi
The Professionals Storm under 16 side played the Cowra Magpies in the minor semi final after defeating CYMS 26 - 8 in a mid-week play-off for fourth position. With two minutes to go Storm and Cowra were drawn 28 - 28 before the Lithgow backs were able to manufacture a great try for a 32 - 28 victory.
Aug 28, 2013 - Storm win play-off against CYMS
The "Professionals" Storm 16s have qualified for the finals in 4th place after defeating Orange CYMS by 26 - 8 in a mid-week play-off under lights at Charles Sturt Uni. The teams finished on equal points after 14 rounds and after defeating CYMS by 22 - 12 earlier in the season the "Professionals" Storm again showed they are the better team this season.
The Storm will play Cowra Magpies in the minor semi-final at Blayney at 3.00 pm Saturday.
Aug 26, 2013 - Storm to play CYMS for Finals spot
The Professionals Storm played competition leaders Bloomfield Tigers in Orange in the last round of the competition and despite leading at half time the Storm were eventually beaten 20 - 6 by the home side.
The Professionals Storm have finished in equal fourth position and will have to qualify for the finals with in a play-off against Orange CYMS tomorrow night at CSU Bathurst at 5.30 pm.*
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