New faces help deliver win to Northern United over Mullum
NEW recruits Tyson Binge and Dan Kilian helped Northern United to a 22-18 win against Mullumbimby in the first round of the Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League competition at Crozier Field, Lismore.
Binge scored the winning try in the 79th minute while Kilian also scored a crucial try just after half-time.
Trailing 18-16 and with three minutes remaining, halfback Willie Hammond opted not to take the kick at goal to square things up when United received a penalty in the attacking half.
Binge had been a handful all afternoon and found enough energy for one last surge to crash his way over the try line in the following set.
Kilian also proved an imposing figure and made plenty of valuable metres for the Dirawongs.
He also gave away his fair share of penalties and spent time in the sin bin
Each side had two players spend time off the field in what was a grinding contest.
"The win comes down to our defence in that last 20 minutes," Dirawongs coach Ash Moran said.
"We have a pretty solid rotation with Dan, Tyson and Les (Roberts) up front.
"That's something we've probably lacked in the last couple of years and they really led the way for us."
Dual International Andrew Walker played his first game with the Dirawongs and was solid throughout.
He set up the first try of the afternoon with a perfectly timed kick to winger Jermaine Roberts.
Kilian was sin-binned just before half-time but the Giants couldn't capitalise while he was off.
He made amends when he returned with a series of strong runs culminating in a try to give the Dirawongs a 10-6 lead in the 51st minute.
Mullumbimby second-rower Jacob Francisco was sin-binned soon after for repeated infringements in the play-the-ball area.
United second-rower James Roberts scored a try while Francisco was off to give Dirawongs a 10-point buffer before Roberts was sin-binned himself.
Consecutive tries, including one to Francisco put the Giants back in front and it looked like they would escape with a two-point win but it wasn't to be.
A returning Chase Nelson was among the try-scorers and was one of the best for the Giants at halfback.
Despite spending some time in the sin bin, hooker Dan Woods was also strong for Mullumbimby.