VINCENTIA'S Ash Hewson and her NSW Waratahs have held on to defeat the Queensland Reds 15-12 in round three of the Super W at Sydney’s Leichhardt Oval.
The rematch of the inaugural Super W grand final lived up to its hype in a close encounter, with both sides crossing for two tries each, with all four wingers across the two teams scoring one-a-piece.
NSW captain Hewson proved to be the difference, with her late first half penalty the difference.
Alana Elisaia scored the first try of the match in the sixth minute, slicing through the NSW defence off a great short ball from Lavinia Gould.
Lori Cramer slotted the conversion to give Queensland an early 7-nil lead.
Hewson missed an opportunity to put NSW on the board in the 12th minute of the match with a penalty, but the home side regathered and crossed for their first try through Maya Stewart just minutes later.
Hewson missed the conversion leaving Queensland ahead 7-5.
Shanice Parker scored off a cross-field kick in the 21st minute for NSW, Hewson added the extras to put the home-side ahead 12-7.
Queensland were reduced to 14-women in the 32nd minute, with Hana Ngaha dealt a yellow card for a cynical infringement.
NSW added to their lead before half-time, slotting a penalty to take the score to 15-7 before the break.
The second half saw the intensity of the match heat up, as both sides stepped up the level of contact in both attack and defence.
The Queensland women held NSW at bay, repelling attacking raids within their own half.
No points were scored until the 67th minute, with Ivania Wong breaking the deadlock, scoring in the corner off the back of a quick-tap from Cobie-Jane Morgan.
Cramer missed the conversion, leaving three points separating the sides at 15-12.
Possession changed hands numerous times in the dying minutes, and a last gasp dash down the left wing from Amy Turner looked as though Queensland might steal the match.
Turner kicked ahead and Wong and NSW winger Parker went into a foot race for the ball as it rolled over NSW’s tryline.
Parker grounded the ball, resulting in a 22m dropout, signaling the end of the match.
Hewson's Waratahs, who are 2-0 on the season, next face the Rugby WA Women at Perth's Curtin University.