It was cold and wet when Stroud Raiders played to the Tea Gardens Hawks in the rugby league clash at Stroud Showground.
The Hawks looked strong as they spent the early minutes on Stroud's tryline. The defence didn't crack and in the sixth minute Fred Kierce received a pass and was too quick for the defence to score under the posts.
Try scoring machine David Lyall hit the defensive line like a bomb minutes later when he charged through for his first try this game. When the conversion hit the post the score was Stroud 10, Tea Gardens 0.
The Hawks kept their line together for the next four sets of tackles, until the 20th minute and as the quarter time hooter rang Fred Kierce again had the opposition clutching at fresh air to score under the posts.
Self appointed captain, Brady Thomas had a great game, with solid runs up field and made it look easy to crash over out wide. The kick waved away and the score was 20-0.
Stroud was looking great as they kept on attacking the Hawks' line , as they passed the ball through 4 sets of hands , to Harry Reid , to go over , untouched.
Dan Smith had a dart down field and made a quick 40 meters, and with the fullback to beat he slipped on the greasy surface.
Again Stroud was in attacking mode as flying winger Corey Baron went close but stood on the chalk as he dived for the line.
The Raiders were quick to get the ball back and man mountain, David Lyall, found himself on the try scorers' list as he collected a miracle pass from Luke "Razza" Worth as he was falling to the ground.
With only minutes left in the first half the score was Stroud 32 , Tea Gardens 0 in what had been a great display of attacking rugby league from the home side.
The second half started in the same manner as the first with Stroud controlling the game.
The Raiders mojo was strong and camped on the Hawks line. Zachery Allen saw a hole opening up and scored, after palming away from tacklers.
Injuries started or mount in the Hawks ranks, but they stayed determined to cross the line. In a couple of attack they started to make some territory.
But Stroud matched it with some swift backline moves to get the ball to Brodie Tull, who stepped inside the defence to score inside the corner post.
Brady Thomas was too good for Tea Gardens , as his second try for the game was marked up and had the large crowd that was in attendance cheering.
At 50-0, the home team didn't let up. The Hawks were short on numbers, as Clint Osborne scored two tries in as many minutes, to put the score at 62-0.
Again the mercy rule came into play and with some confusion whether Tea Gardens was playing on or not had the Hawks coach and long time Raider Greg Tassell deciding to play on.
At this point the Raiders coach Steve Boyton, took to the field as a fresh reserve. And only being on the field for seconds, a long pass was delivered and he went over the line to put the score at 66-0, a game for him to remember.
Coaching staff from the visitors was calling for the game to come to an end after another player got injured , which left the score at 66-0 following another commanding performance from Stroug.
In the earlier game the Raiders women's league tag (WLT) side took on the Maitland Pickers.
The local girls put on a brave performance to minimise the Pickers' scoring opportunities. The first 15 minutes was scoreless but Maitland looked fresh and ran in quick tries, to flood the score to 24-0.
The second half was similar to the first, as our girls kept the opposite side without adding extra points.
Pickers picked up the pace and ran in seven second half tries, to finish the game at 62-0.
Well done to our girls for turning up each week and putting on a great performance in this tough A grade competition.
Best on field was Holly Fisher-Webster and crowd favourite Victoria Hawthorn.
Next week the Raiders men don't play , but will return to Stroud on Saturday July 31 at 3 pm to take on Raymond Terrace.
Get yourself to the footy. UP THE RAIDERS ,!