The Coolum Colts C grade team consolidated a top-three spot with a 52-26 win over Maroochydore in the Red Rooster Cup last Saturday.
In an outstanding display of attacking footy that augurs well for the fast-approaching semi-finals, the Colts ran in 10 tries to four in the comprehensive victory at Caboolture.
Coach Nathan Ratcliffe was particularly impressed with the debuts of under-18 players Dave Samson and half Jake Grundy.
“Both players have represented Wide Bay as juniors, and today they were instrumental in the helping the backs score seven of the team’s 10 tries,” Ratcliffe said.
“In particular, Dave Samson was outstanding. Dave is still only 17 but at 202cm and 105kg he has the size and pace to be a thorn in any side.”
With Samson playing strongly in the centres, winger Denis Gordon scored three impressive tries.
“Denis had a lot to do to score those tries and deserves praise for his efforts but without Dave inside him the opportunities may not have been generated,” he said.
Ratcliffe also liked what he saw from halfback Jake Grundy.
“He defended extremely well and showed he can read a game. He led the team around the park like he had been there all season,” he said.
On the injury front things are coming good at the right time of the season for the Colts, with hooker Corey Gray returning to his best, with three tries last weekend, and forwards Jay Yelds and Jeff Halligan and winger Chris Romero returning after long layoffs.
“All were part of our impressive displays in the early part of the season and were instrumental in our 52 point win over Yandina in April,” Ratcliffe said.
“All three came through the game well and look ready for the run into the finals as do ex-internationals Dale Shearer and Wayne Bartrim.”
Player coach Ratcliffe also expects to be back from his broken arm in a couple of weeks.
“So we should be well-placed to give the finals a big push,” he said.
Coolum 52 (Corey Grey 3, Denis Gordon 3, Shane Hartshorn 2, Chris Romero, Jake Grundy tries; Shaun Catlin 4, Dave Simspon 2 goals defeated Maroochydore 26.
Meanwhile, it has been announced the Coolum Colts will host two Red Rooster Cup semi-finals this month.
On August 30 at Ronnie Cargill Oval, the second placed team will play third, and fourth will take on fifth in the C grade competition.
Colts president Quinton Stevenson said the decision to hold semi-finals at Coolum was a vote of confidence by the Sunshine Coast Gympie Rugby League.
“We have tried to make each post a winner this year as we push for inclusion in the elite A grade competition,” he said.
“On the field the results have been outstanding and holding senior semi finals in Coolum is a real feather in the cap for the district.”
Stevenson said the league had been very impressed by the hometown support for the Coolum Colts
“The crowd at our last home game was bigger than several of the crowds that have attended A grade games this year and the semi at home will be the last chance that we can showcase the region to the league this year,” he said.