By Candyce Grew
The Warwick Cowboys are gearing up for their first Saturday night home game of the season against the Highfields Eagles, with coaches across all grades confident in their player’s abilities, approaching the end of round one in the Toowoomba Rugby League competition.
Warwick Cowboys A Grade coach Matt Grew said that he was very happy with his side’s defensive effort at the weekend against Gatton.
“I believe this is what won us the game,” Grew said.
“Mitch Watson again was excellent and received the Players’ Player award for the game as well as the Toowoomba Rugby League Player of the Round.
“Brad Morrish and Jake Speed stepped up from Reserve Grade and both had very impressive games.
“We have another tough game this Saturday against Highfields back at Father Ranger Oval and a win will see us sitting outright second on the table.”
The Warwick Cowboys A Grade side defeated Gatton 36-16.
Warwick Cowboys Reserve Grade coach Aaron McVeigh said after a couple of narrow losses over the past few weeks, they were able to bounce back with a gutsy win (22-18) against the top of the table team, the Gatton Hawkes, at Gatton’s Cahill Park last Sunday.
“After leading by 14 points at half time, Gatton rallied to come back to within four points, but our defense held solid late in the game, to come away with a crucial victory,” McVeigh said.
“Our best forward on the day was Dan Conn and best backs included Brodie Quirk and Hayden Bussel.
“This win moves us up to third position, with a massive game against the top of the ladder, Highfields, this weekend.”
Warwick Cowboys Women’s co-coaches Terri Gilbert and Mark Sullivan remained confident following their first loss of the season on Sunday to Gatton, 32-4.
“The women had their first loss to a very strong, hard running Gatton team,” Gilbert said.
“We got on the back foot from mistakes and had to do a lot of defense.
“We lost Carly Cooper in the first five minutes and Jayla Sefo just before half time. This made our rotation smaller in the forwards with all the defense gone from the first half, we were outclasses by a very strong side in the second half.
“Positives for us are that we can definitely score if we have some possession, and the girls never gave up for the full 70 minutes.
“We knew this game would be a test and now we go back to training and working hard to improve before our next game.”
Sullivan said the Warwick team had a horrid completion rate, riddled with unforced errors.
“The game gave the women the opportunity to see what level they have to be at to have any chance of competing in the back-end of the season,” he said.
“New-signing Molly O’Connal had outstanding debut for the Cowboys and was rewarded with the Players’ Player award.”
Warwick Cowboys Under 18s coach Scott Fisher said Jack McMeniman had a strong game, despite a loss (38-4), against Gatton last weekend.
“Everyone just had an off-day, combined with the heat, we just let ourselves down,” Fisher said.
“The boys know to learn from their mistakes and come back stronger and smarter for the next game.”