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Reh gun fires as Blues power to U19 Origin triumph

A sublime display from halfback Kasey Reh has powered NSW to a 46-4 win over Queensland in the women's Under 19 Origin clash at Leichhardt Oval on Thursday night.

With Tarsha Gale Cup player of the series Reh in total control the Blues ran in nine tries to avenge a 20-14 loss in last year's clash in Redcliffe.

A mistake by Maroons winger Ebony Raftstrand-Smith coming out of her own end in the sixth minute handed the Blues an opportunity and Reh powered her way over on the right edge to make it 4-0 with Chelsea Savill unable to convert.

With the Blues on the attack again it was Raftstrand-Smith making amends for her earlier error with a strong tackle to deny Maria Paseka, who had taken a bomb on the full and set her sights on line.

Kasey Reh Try

Come the 16th minute and Raftstrand-Smith added a try to her trysavser when she latched onto a cut-out pass from Skyla Adams and ran over the top of Paseka to tie things up at 4-4.

A pinpoint long kick by Reh in the 19th minute pinned the Maroons in goal and from the ensuing line dropout Blues winger Lindsay Tui showed great pace to outstrip the defence on the left and put her side ahead 8-4.

Ebony Raftstrand-Smith Try

Just five minutes later the Blues had a third when hooker Savill burrowed over from close range and added the extras to stretch the lead to 10 points.

On the back of a long break by winger Tia-Jordyn Vasilovski it was Newcastle's Tarsha Gale Cup player of the year Evah McEwen who capitalised with a brilliant solo try to send the home side to the break with a commanding 20-4 lead. 

Indie Bostock Try

Four minutes into the second half the Blues went further ahead when Reh nudged a grubber into the in goal and Shellharbour Stingrays junior Bronte Wilson followed through to grab the bouncing ball and score.

Back-to-back penalties against the Blues for dangerous tackles put the Maroons in range and Shauna Barnham looked to have grabbed her team's second try but replays showed she had lost the ball as she attempted to get it down.

The Blues stretched their lead to 30-4 in the 40th minute when Reh put Paseka over in the right corner before Evie McGrath crossed after great lead-up work by Evie Jones.

Maroons fullback Montaya Hudson produced a gutsy trysaver on McGrath in the 49th minute but the Blues quickly shifted to the right side and Ryvrr-Lee Alo capped a strong game with a four-pointer from close range.

Indie Bostock was the next to get in on the action in the 51st minute as the Blues put the finishing touches on a memorable victory.

Match Snapshot

  • Evah McEwen scored 12 tries in nine games for Newcastle in the Tarsha Gale Cup.
  • The Blues completed 15 of 16 sets in the first half and had 58 per cent of possession. The Maroons had just 12 sets but completed 11 of those.
  • The Blues had 10 line breaks for the night compared four for the Maroons.
  • Maroons fullback Montaya Hudson was placed on report for a hair pull in the 49th minute.
  • The Maroons were forced to make 234 tackles compared to the Blues' tally of 169.
  • Blues halfback Kasey Reh was voted player of the match.

The U19s Women's Origin trophy presentation

  • Blues bench forward Bronte Wilson has been granted an age exemption to play NRLW with the Dragons at just 17 years of age.
  • The Blues' winning margin of 42 was the biggest in the four years of the women's Under 19 Origin games.
  • The NSW side included nine members of the Tarsha Gale Cup premiership winners Illawarra Steelers.
  • The Blues had 43 tackle breaks for the match while the Maroons had 13.
  • Maroons prop Matekino Gray left the field for a HIA in the 58th minute.

Evah McEwen Try

Play of the Game 

Samoan representative Lindsay Tui took a line dropout on the full in the 19th minute and stepped on the gas to leave two Maroons defenders in her wake. Tui covered the 18 metres to the line in double quick time, catching the defence napping to post the Blues' second try of the night.

Lindsay Tui Try

Acknowledgement of Country

St George Illawarra Dragons respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders peoples, where our games are played, our programs are conducted and in the communities we support.

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