The ACT Brumbies booked their place in next weekend’s Super Rugby semi-finals with a thrilling 32-30 victory over the Waikato Chiefs at GIO Stadium on Saturday night.
The Brumbies were at their attacking best as they ran in four tries to condemn the Chiefs to their first play-off loss in three seasons. The victory sets up a mouth-watering clash with bitter rivals the New South Wales Waratahs in Sydney next weekend.
Nic White, the Brumbies’ halfback, was instrumental throughout the contest and claimed the home side’s first try off the back of some excellent forward play in the sixth minute. His effort was quickly followed by tries to Robbie Coleman and Jessie Mogg, while Jarrad Butler crossed the line for the Brumbies’ only second-half try.
The Chiefs rallied in the second-half and threatened an upset, but the Brumbies held on to claim the stunning two-point win.
In local John I Dent Cup action, Queanbeyan belted Wests 47-24 to claim a second-place finish on the ladder, Royals brushed Gungahlin aside 38-24, and Uni-Norths finished the season on a high with a 36-22 win over Easts.
Canberra FC kept its championship hopes alive with a 5-1 dismantling of Woden Valley at Deakin Stadium on Saturday.
FC scored four first-half goals and added a fifth late on to send a warning to its competition rivals.
Adam Spaleta opened FC’s account in the 16th minute before Alex Oloriegbe sent his side two goals to the good when he converted from the spot just after the half-hour mark. Woden’s John Gibson made matters worse for the visitors when he inadvertently guided the ball into his own net in the 34th minute.
Marco Gayer got Woden on the score sheet in the 42nd minute, but that was as good as it got for Valley as James Field netted FC’s fourth on the stroke of half-time. Debutant Anthony Giorgi made it 5-1 and completed the rout with a fine strike in 90th minute.
In other National Premier League action, a hat-trick from Mark Shields helped Canberra Olympic to a 4-1 win over Tuggeranong United, Cooma swatted Monaro aside with a 5-2 victory to go top of the league, and Canberra City claimed a 1-0 win over FFA COE.
The Canberra Raiders’ 2014 season took yet another disappointing turn when they suffered a 28-14 loss to the Melbourne Storm on Saturday.
The Raiders failed to carry the momentum of last weekend’s big win over the Gold Coast Titans into the round 19 clash at AAMI Park. Raiders’ fullback Anthony Milford was unable to stamp his mark on the game due to the Storm’s excellent suffocation job on the young star and with his attacking brilliance largely absent, Canberra never really entered the contest.
Mahe Fonua scored a double for the Storm and he was joined on the score sheet by Jordan McLean, Marika Koroibete and Sisa Waga. Sami Sauiluma, Anthony Milford and Jarrod Croker crossed for the Raiders.
In the Canberra Raiders Cup, the Tuggeranong Bushrangers beat Belconnen United 32-18, Queanbeyan Kangaroos defeated Goulburn 18-10, Woden Valley snuck past Gungahlin 22-18, and the Queanbeyan Blues edged past West Belconnen with a thrilling 30-28 win.
The Belconnen Magpies recorded an empathic 21.17 (143) to 9.5 (59) victory over Eastlake in the NEAFL on Saturday.
Jack Steele was the star of the show as he racked up 30-odd touches and kicked a goal in the huge victory, but he wasn’t the only Belconnen player to impress.
Jordan Harper kicked six goals, while Chris York bagged five during a memorable afternoon for their club.
In Saturday’s other match, Ainslie recorded a comfortable 0.4 5.9 6.11 12.16 (88) – 5.2 6.3 8.10 8.10 (58) win over Sydney Hills Eagles.
The Canberra Brave’s Australian Ice Hockey League game against the Adelaide Adrenaline was cancelled after the visitors’ team bus crashed on Saturday afternoon.
The bus rolled over between Goulburn and Eaglehawk late in afternoon while transporting players and officials to Phillip Ice Skating Centre for Saturday evening’s game. No one was seriously injured.
Impressive performances from Alice Coddington and Nat Hurst helped the Canberra Capitals Academy to just its second win of the South East Australia Basketball League season on Friday night.
Coddington scored 20 points and Australian Opals point guard Hurst contributed 19 as the Academy finished over the top of Frankston Lady Blues with a 69-61 victory at the Belconnen Basketball Stadium.
Coddington shot an impressive 9-14 from the field and was solid at the defensive end with six steals, while Hurst’s impact off the bench was immense.
Meanwhile, the Canberra Gunners’ four-game winning streak came to a screeching halt after losing 110-79 to Frankston on Friday night.
Import Garlon Green contributed 30 points, but his efforts were not enough as the Gunners struggled without promising point guard Tad Dufelmeier and Dan Jackson.