ORANGE Emus’ Charles Sturt University hoodoo is finally broken.
Before Saturday’s 51-12 thumping of the students, Emus had not won a game at CSU Bathurst’s University Oval in five seasons.
In fact, in the greens’ last 10 Blowes Clothing Cup encounters with CSU, home or away, Emus prevailed in just two.
Emus had met with five consecutive heartbreaking losses at University Oval, all by 10 points or less.
With a new-look team, including former CSU five-eighth Sam Ryan, Emus ran in seven tries to two on Saturday to break the curse.
Emus halfback TJ Cunynghame is one of few players who played in all 10 games over the previous five seasons, and said it was good to the monkey off his team’s back.
“It’s nice just to win over the students, to do it in Bathurst was a plus,” he said.
“There’s always nerves playing CSU because they can create something out of nothing and run away with it, anything can happen really. We’ve had a much better start this season, a few of the new guys have given us a new dimension in the way we play.”
The top grade win was the icing on the cake for Emus after wins in all three lower grade games as well.
An inspired performance from fullback Dave Faul led Emus to a 34-8 win in second grade, while the greens third graders held the students off for a scrappy 26-17 win.
In the day’s biggest upset, Emus colts produced a stunning performance to hold off CSU, 2013’s runner-up, 23-15.
“That was the most encouraging thing of the day I think,” Cunynghame said.
“We’ve struggled for numbers recently in colts, and granted it was university holidays so CSU were weakened, but we have a talented bunch of young blokes and seeing them get a win against quality opposition is huge.
“There’s a good feeling around the club and I’m really looking forward to seeing what we can do this year in all four grades.”
After this weekend’s general bye for Easter, Emus will look to maintain momentum in the third-round clash with Parkes Boars at Endeavour Oval.