The St George Illawarra Dragons have jumped to second on the NRL Telstra Premiership ladder following their 28-6 win over the Wests Tigers on Sunday
The Dragons scored first through veteran winger Jason Nightingale in the seventh minute following a magic flick pass from centre partner Tim Lafai.
Nightingale had his second try five minutes later when a kick across field from skipper Gareth Widdop landed nicely in the New Zealand international's hands.
While the Tigers were unlucky to not score tries through Ava Seumanufagai and James Tedesco throughout the first half, Nightingale had the last laugh when he secured a hat-trick of tries in the 31st minute.
In fact, the winger almost had his fourth just mere seconds before half-time but was pulled down short.
The Tigers pulled one back in the 49th minute when Kevin Naiqama scooped up a Widdop error to post first points for his side.
An unfortunate hamstring injury to Josh Dugan midway through the second half was offset almost instantly when Tim Lafai scored his second try of the year not even 60 seconds later.
Winger Nene Macdonald capped of his 50th NRL appearance when he grabbed handle of a Josh McCrone grubber to score in the corner – his first for the club – and secure another Red V win.
A consolation penalty goal from Leeson Ah Mau – in his 100th NRL game for the Dragons – capped off the 22-point win.
St George Illawarra Dragons 28 (Jason Nightingale 3, Tim Lafai, Nene Macdonald tries; Gareth Widdop 3, Leeson Ah Mau goal(s)) defeated Wests Tigers 6 (Kevin Naiqama try; Mitchell Moses goal) at ANZ Stadium, Olympic Park. Half-time: Dragons 14-0. Crowd: 13,172.