Berry Magpies go down despite early lead

KIAMA have continued their strong start to the season with a 28-14 win over Berry at Kiama Showground.

In an error-riddled game, the Knights took a four-point lead into half-time before running away with the match in the second half.

Berry opened the game with a glut of possession and they jumped to an early lead when Blake Dryden scampered out of dummy-half to open scoring.

Josh Coulter converted to make it 6-nil.

Berry continued to dominate possession and Dryden came close to scoring for a second time, before Kiama hit back with a long range try, Jack Alexander sliced through the Berry line before linking up with Jacob Dolan to make it 6-4.

Even after the Kiama try, Berry still seemed to spending an inordinate amount time with the ball in hand and they made the most of it, producing a sweeping play down the left-hand side to send rookie back-rower Bryce Rutherford over to make it 10-4.

It was then Kiama who started to dominate the run of play, and after three straight sets attacking the Berry line they found away through when Keiran Poole steamed through a gap to level the scores.

Berry then made things even worse for themselves, putting the next kick-off out on the full and Kiama made the most of the gifted field position, Corey Grigg plucked a deft kick from Poole out of the air to send the two sides to the sheds with Kiama ahead 14-10.

Kiama started the second half with the same momentum and were rewarded when Alexander managed to burrow over out wide to make it 18-10.

Berry still had plenty of fight in them and their next set of six saw them roll their way up-field with ease and cut the gap back to four when Rory McCall dived on spilt bomb from Josh Ingold.

Sensing that Berry were finding their way back into the game, Kiama stepped up their game and put any thought of a comeback to bed.

A penalty put the home side deep into Berry territory and they took advantage, prop Jacob Morrison stormed through a hole to cross.

Alexander converted to make it 24-10.

Not long after Kiama were on the attack again and veteran Marc Laird put the icing on the cake when he crashed over out wide to make it 28-14.

Berry’s day only got worse when Lloyd Sharpe was sent-off late in the game.

For Kiama Poole, Alexander and Cameron Whittaker all had strong games, while Dryden, Ingold and Nathan Benney were Berry’s best. 

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