Moruya Sharks returned to the winners' list outlasting the Merimbula-Pambula Bulldogs 34-28 on a glorious autumn's day in Moruya.
A big crowd for the Mother's Day clash saw the Sharks debut teenagers Kane Duncan and Jack Grant and the return of Aaron Brierley to cover a large injury toll.
Both clubs were understrength for the Mother's Day clash where the Sharks debuted teenagers Kane Duncan and Jack Grant, while the return of Aaron Brierley helped cover the large injury toll.
Similarly the Bulldogs were short a few key personnel and called on their portability Candelo-Bemboka players to fill the bench.
Sharks coach Neil Williams said the contest was a draining "arm wrestle" at both ends, but the Moruya outfit had lifted their ball control on previous rounds.
"We controlled the ball and played it down our end a lot better, but we still have a lot of work to do," he said.
The 'Dogs made the first break when James McMillan found room on the edge and then Brock Seabrook secured a first-half double.
With all three converted by Corey Schafer the Bulldogs were on the front foot at 18-0.
However, the Sharks began controlling the ball better with Duncan reaping the rewards to score two on the fringe late in the half, reeling the Dogs back to an 18-10 margin at the break.
A good talk at the half had the home side firing into the second half with tries to Dennis Green and Patrick McMahon in the first five minutes seeing the Sharks up 22-18.
The Sharks were all but across the line when Dogs fullback Luke Rixon recovered a loose ball to run a length-of-the-field try.
Despite this, the Sharks took command of play and tries to Dean Scott and Dennis Green soon followed to restore the Sharks lead at 34-24 with 20 minutes remaining.
Seabrook was able to find this third for the Bulldogs late in the piece, but the Sharks held out the dying minutes for the 34-28 win.
The Bulldogs spent a good part of the second half pressing the attack into Moruya's defensive 20, but club officials credited a resolute Sharks defence for containing the visitors.
Earlier, the Sharkettes had a comfortable win in league-tag, downing the Candelo-Bemboka Pink Panthers 28-6.
The Sharkettes were strong across the park with five individual try-scorers with the Pink Panthers only able to find the try-line once through Nikki Ainsworth.
Renee Coubrough impressed with the boot, kicking four of five conversion attempts including adding the two points to her own try on the day.
Completing the clean sweep, the Sharks had also won the reserve grade fixture 34-8.
Jarrod Cottington was a standout out of the halves, picking up a double as the Sharks ran out a dominant performance over the visitors.