Hawks juniors in a league of their own in knockout

ORANGE Hawks earned their first piece of silverware for 2014 with a clinical victory in the Orange CYMS Knockout at Norton Park on Saturday.

The two-blues dominated all those who came before them on their way to the under 18s title, with coach Jared Brodrick stoked at the result.

“It was a good day overall really,” Brodrick said.

“The boys really clicked together. We lost a lot of our 18s from last year but the boys coming up from 16s have played together, and played a lot of grand finals together. They can all play and they mixed it really well with the older guys.”

Hawks held off a strong Bathurst St Pat’s team in round one, winning 22-18 before demolishing cross-town rivals and hosts CYMS 46-4.

In the semi-final the young Hawks unit walked over Lithgow Workies 24-4 before compiling a near-flawless victory over the Cowra Magpies in the grand final 22-12.

Brodrick said his team used the 2013 knockout grand final loss, to Bathurst Panthers, as motivation for the win.

“It was particularly good to go one better,” he said.

“Last year we had no reserves for the final because of injuries and stuff during the day, but this year we had about 30 boys on the books, so we had a full bench.”

Brodrick was loathe to single out any of his players as stars, but conceded two players had shone above anyone else.

“Deryne McKenzie at lock was a real standout for me,” Brodrick said.

“And Tony Pellow, they both played seriously good footy.”

After a grand final loss to the Magpies in the 2013 Group 10 season proper, Brodrick said it was exciting to see his team get one back on Cowra in preparation for the 2014 season.

“It puts us in a good spot leading into the season,” he said. “We’ll have a lot of depth which is the main thing. We’re going to have some seriously good players sitting on the bench I think.”

matthew.findlay@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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