Penrith Panthers have retaken their place at the top of the table with a 26-12 win over the Newtown Jets at St Marys Leagues Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Penrith halfback Sean O’Sullivan and hooker Mitch Kenny played leading roles, as the Panthers scored four tries to two to record their seventh win of the season
The 14-point triumph caps of a dream weekend for the Panthers, which saw wins in the NRL and Jersey Flegg, as well as the SG Ball team claiming a thrilling grand final win.
The Panthers opened the scoring after six minutes when halfback O’Sullivan found Sunia Turuva on his inside, and the speedy fullback bounced off a couple of defenders for a sizzling try. Kurt Falls landed the conversion for a 6-0 lead.
The home side doubled its advantage moments later when hooker Mitch Kenny drifted out from dummy-half to link with skipper J'maine Hopgood, who barged his way over from close range.
Jets halfback Luke Metcalf attempted to inspire his side with a successful 40/20, and despite multiple sets on the Penrith line, the hosts stood tall in defence to deny their opponents.
The Panthers were rewarded for their efforts with O’Sullivan putting forward Preston Riki through a hole for the third try of the game – and Falls landed another conversion.
HALF-TIME: PANTHERS 18 – JETS 6
Following a scoreless period after half-time, tensions flared between the two sides, which saw Kenny and Jets five-eighth Lachlan Miller sent to the sin bin for a scuffle.
The Panthers, however, were awarded the penalty in front, and Falls took the free two points for a 20-6 advantage.
Kenny made up for his indiscretion when he returned from the field as he assisted prop Lindsay Smith, who barged over the line. Falls added the extras to extend Penrith’s lead to 26-6.
Panthers centre Robert Jennings was sent to the sin bin with six minutes remaining, and the Jets took advantage of the extra man with a try to Frank Pele.
FULL-TIME: PANTHERS 26 - JETS 12