The Illawarra Cutters were defeated 36-30 by the Wentworthville Magpies at Pirtek Stadium, Parramatta on Saturday.
The top offensive team in Wentworthville and the top defensive team the Cutters both had a lot to prove.
It only took two minutes for Wentworthville to show why they have scored the most points this season with Justin Hunt crossing over as the Magpies capitalized on an early Cutters error.
Wentworthville converted through Luke Kelly.
However, it did not take long for the Cutters to hit back after Rory O’Brien picked up a loose ball after Justin Hunt was unable to field a high arching bomb in the sixth minute.
Cutters halfback Michael Witt converted to make it 6-all.
In the 16th minute Charly Runciman knocked the ball loose after a strong tackle which allowed Sam Williams to streak away un-touched for the try.
Williams converted his own try to extend their lead to 12-6.
In the 22nd minute the game continued to be tight with Wenworthville hitting back through winger Bureta Faramio.
Kelly evened scores at 12-all.
Wentworthville regained the lead on the halfhour mark through Hunt’s second try of the encounter.
The Cutters quickly evened up affairs going into the interval through Williams, who picked up another failed attempt by the Magpies to clean up a high ball.
Williams converted to make it 18-all.
The second half started well for the Cutters with a Charly Runciman try in the 41st minute.
The Cutters attempted to pull away when Willie Mattaka strolled over the line after some nice work by Sam Williams in the 47th minute.
The Cutters lead grew to 30-18.
Yet Wentworthville refused to let the Cutters run away with the game and scored a rampaging try through Tonga international Fuifui Moimoi in the 54th minute.
Kelly converted to make it 30-24.
The Magpies comeback continued with a try down the sideline to courtesy of Henry Raiwalui in the 57th minute.
The Magpies clinched the lead with a Ryan Morgan try off of a nice set play ten minutes from time.
Kelly converted to make it 34-30.
The Magpies were rewarded a penalty slotted home by Kelly in the final minutes.
Wentworthville Magpies 36 defeated the Illawarra Cutters 30.
Illawarra Cutters 30. Tries: Williams (2), Runciman, Mataka, O'Brien. Goals: Witt (5/5).
Wentworthville Magpies 36. Tries: Hunt (2), Faraimo, Raiwalui, Morgan, Moimoi. Goals: Kelly (5/6). Penalty Goal: Kelly (1/1).