In a hard fought battle at Sportingbet Stadium, the Panthers have succumbed to a strong Melbourne outfit, going down 24-10.
Before the match there was a minute’s silence for James Segeyaro’s father who passed away during the week, with the 9,000 strong crowd who turned out to watch the match all paying their respects.
Tonight’s game was always going to be tough. It had been an emotional week for our boys and our injury list wasn’t getting any shorter, but the boys still dug deep and put in 100 per cent.
The Storm drew first blood after a Panthers pass was intercepted by winger Marika Koroibete, who took off down the field, sprinting 80m to get the ball over the line. Cameron Smith converted to give the visitors a 6-0 lead.
For the next half an hour, both teams went hammer and tong at each other, fighting desperately to get close to their line.
With six minutes until the half time break Penrith got the breakthrough they had been waiting for and young Dallin Watene-Zelezniak crossed for our first try! Kev Kingston collected the ball from dummy half, sent to right to Jamie Soward from 15m out, he sent it to Matt Moylan who threw a beautifully timed cut out pass to Dallin on the wing, and he dived over the line just inside the corner post. Soward struck the ball brilliantly from the sideline to send it straight through the uprights to even the score 6-6.
Just as the half time siren sounded, Melbourne went over for their second try after a cross field kick from Cooper Cronk sailed just short of the in-goal wher Sisa Waqa was able to knock it back to Will Chambers, and he dived underneath a Panthers defender to get over the line. The kick bounced off the post, so the score went to 10-6.
HALF TIME: 10-6 Storm
For the first 10 minutes of this half the penalty count increased significantly for both teams, with Melbourne benefitting in the 50th minute with a kick for two that extended their lead to 12-6.
In the 56th minute, Melbourne scored again with the help of the soggy field at Sportingbet Stadium. A Penrith defender slipped and missed a tackle on the 10m line, which saw Ben Roberts run through some space and over the line. Smith’s conversion put the visitors in front 18-6.
With 18 minutes left on the clock, Melbourne crossed for their third unanswered try after stretching our defence wide and sending Billy Slater into some space and over the line. Smith’s kick put them in front 24-6.
With just under 3 minutes on the clock, Jamal Idris added another four points to our total after barging his way through the Storm’s backline and diving over to score. Moylan took a quick kick and just missed, so the score went to 24-10.
FULL TIME: 24-10 Storm