A GOOD crowd and four games of entertaining football –Saturday’s Western Rams versus Federation of Italia Rugby League Australia fixtures were a success.
Across the four games 1,040 people watched on at Carrington Park and saw the hosts and the visitors notch up two wins apiece.
FIRST GRADE: WESTERN suffered a 34-18 loss against a classy Federation of Italia Rugby League Australia outfit in Bathurst on Saturday, but assistant coach Kip Maranda is confident the Rams are on the right path.
Both sides used the Carrington Park clash as a means of viewing players with potential headed into, for the Azzurri, the 2017 World Cup and, for Maranda’s Rams, next year’s country championship.
Naturally disappointed after the loss, Maranda said it was important to look at the positives out of a fixture designed to give a stack of promising young stars Rams debuts.
Forbes’ Mitch Burke, Lithgow’s Mitch Case and Orange CYMS pivot Dom Maley were three of those players, the trio drawing praise from Maranda.
FIRLA 34 (Blake Cavelarro 3, Ethan Natoli 2, Josh Bergamin tries; Blake Cavelarro 5 goals) def WESTERN RAMS 18 (Dom Maley, Jacob Neill, Ben Maguire tries; Warren Williams 2, Brad James goals).
Under 21s: THREE tries in six minutes saw the Western Rams under 21s come from behind to beat their Federation of Italia Rugby League Australia rivals 26-16 at Carrington Park on Saturday.
Trailing 12-10 after the opening 35-minute half, the Rams found themselves under pressure early in the second stanza.
Momentum then swung as the hosts quickly surged to a 14-point lead – a scoring blitz which FIRLA was unable to recover from.
“They’re a really fast, mobile side. We didn’t know what to expect, but they had that speed and they sort of worried us a little bit when they got the ball wide with offloads,” Rams coach Kurt Hancock said.
WESTERN RAMS UNDER 21s 26 (Matt Ranse 2, Hudson White, Zac Adams, Camden Sutton tries; Hudson White 2, Nick Millar goals) defeated FIRLA UNDER 21s 16 (Nick Lawrence, Josh Natoli, Kyle Lowe tries; Todd Sapienza 2 goals)
Under 16s: GROUP 10 UNDER 16s (Brad Baker 3, Cody Ramsey, Nick Tillburg, Will Cusack, Matt Booker, John Markowski tries; Cody Ramsey 6 goals) defeated FIRLA WHITE 24 (Joel Saldaneri 2, James Olivero, Michael Gibbons tries; Sam Elias 4 goals)
RAMS UNDER 16s: The Rams came up against FIRLA’s under 16s Blue side, with the Italians storming to a 22-0 lead. Western fought back, but FIRLA took the win 28-14.