Palmerston remain unbeaten at the top of the NRL NT ladder
PALMERSTON kept its undefeated NRL NT record in tact at Goodline Park last night with a 20-16 win over a gallant Litchfield outfit.
Daniel Keelan’s men survived a late flurry from the Bears, who fought hard but were hamstrung by poor ball control.
The Raiders took an 8-4 lead into the break after Litchfield had struck first through a Jacob Penhaligon try.
It came after the Bears caught Palmerston short on the right flank, but their momentum didn’t last long.
The Raiders hit back through a Lachlan Bryan barge-over effort, which was followed by another from second rower Shane Smith.
And they extended the margin to 10 points, eight minutes into the second half when Clinton Chettle found his way across the stripe.
As the Raiders’ scoreboard pressure mounted, their middle men made a mark. Adam Hall was a wrecking ball in his return from injury, while Blake Fletcher worked tirelessly at hooker and provided a strong kick from dummy half.
Litchfieldóóós mistakes made it hard to maintain any attacking pressure in Palmerston’s red zone, but their effort never wavered.
The Bears eventually crossed the stripe for a second time with 20 minutes remaining, through Jordan Lynas on the right edge.
However, it was immediately cancelled out. From the subsequent kick off, Palmerston forced an error on the first tackle and scored two plays later through winger Will Beers.
But the Bears wouldn’t lie down, and with seven minutes to play a barnstorming Daniel Gallow broke through to get his side back within four.
They almost stole the win when Matt Goodfellow broke freely down field in the dying stages, but the men in green and black were able to recover defensively.
In other fixtures, Brothers escaped with a 26-20 win over the Northern Sharks only after scoring a match winning try with 40 seconds to play, while Nightcliff beat Katherine 54-34.