The Panthers Jersey Flegg side continued its winning ways with a 40-6 victory over Manly Warringah Sea Eagles at St Marys Leagues Stadium on Sunday.
The win returns the Panthers to the top of the Jersey Flegg ladder, with the team having suffered only one defeat in 2021.
After just five minutes against the Sea Eagles, Panthers hooker Luke Sommerton found rampaging prop Ilai Tuai, who stormed through the defensive line to open the scoring. Five-eighth Niwhai Puru converted from close range to get the Panthers away to an early 6-0 lead.
Halfback Hayden Bonnano and Puru attacked the right edge defence of the Sea Eagles and sent winger Flynn Isaacs over to extend the lead in the 25th minute. Puru pushed the sideline conversion wide.
HALF-TIME: Panthers 10 – Sea Eagles 0
The Panthers started the second half just as they did the first when forward Vito Tevaga cut underneath fullback Sadee Sub Laban and powered his way over the Sea Eagles defence. Puru converted the four-pointer to take the score to 16-0.
Manly were quick to hit back when Keegan Turner finished a crisp backline move. Zane Harris nailed the sideline conversion to reduce the Panthers lead to 10.
Tuai repeated his early effort when he powered through the Sea Eagles line to claim his second try of the afternoon in the 49th minute. Puru’s conversion took the score to 22-6.
Four minutes later backrower Sunita Lotoaniu ran a great line onto a Puru pass on the left edge and barreled his way over. The conversion from Puru hit the right upright and bounced over.
Puru added a penalty goal shortly after to take the lead to 24 points with just 14 minutes to go.
The score blew out in the final minutes of the game when fleet-footed centre Elone Taufu brushed off some flimsy defence on the left edge, before Niwhai Puru scored the seventh and final four-pointer with an intercept and 60-metre dash to the line.
FULL-TIME: Panthers 40 – Sea Eagles 6