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Saints and Geebungs thriller

Monday, 2nd June, 2014

Broken Hill Saints winger Adam Betts picked up a try in his side’s 22-all draw with Geebungs on Saturday. PICTURE: Ethan James Broken Hill Saints winger Adam Betts picked up a try in his side’s 22-all draw with Geebungs on Saturday. PICTURE: Ethan James

By Ethan James

It may not have attracted the fanfare of the State of Origin opener but Saints and Geebungs produced an equally thrilling finish in round five of the Outback Rugby League.

Trailing by four points, Saints crossed for a try seconds before fulltime to lock the game up at 22-all.

They had a chance to snatch an unlikely win after the hooter but their conversion from close to the sideline drifted to the left.

Saints five-eighth Luke Kooyman drew some comparisons between Lamb Oval and Wednesday night’s epic at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.

“In terms of closeness I’d say so, but overall both side probably need to lift their intensity a bit,” he said with a wry smile after the match.

Geebungs held a narrow 12-10 lead at halftime and increased their lead to eight points when Darryl Bugmy burrowed over.

But Saints hit back with back-to-back tries through rangy centre Shane Saunders and Owen McKellar off a ball from Kooyman, equalling the score at 18-all.

Errors crept into the contest midway through the second half before Dwayne Morgan stepped through the line for Geebungs.

That made the score 22-18 in favour of the blue and whites, setting up a grandstand finish in the final eight minutes.

Goal kicking proved the Saints’ Achilles heel - they scored five tries to Geebungs’ four.

“Our forward held up the middle but I just think out options out wide just weren’t on song,” Kooyman said.

“The ball was a bit late to get out there and often the gaps closed up before we could get it there.”

Last year’s premiers now sit in third position after five rounds.

“It takes a few rounds to get out of third gear I reckon but we’re getting there, slowly I think,” Kooyman said.

“For a side that is still gelling, we’re coming along pretty well.

“Personally, a little bit of fitness would help and getting to training would be good too.”

In the other matches, Boomerangs defeated Yabbies 22-14 while the Warriors notched their first win of the season with a 62-20 victory over United.

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