Blackcats have one more shot at finals

Tim Van Horen and Steve Easter show great determination in defence for the Blackcats against CSU Yellow last weekend.

Tim Van Horen and Steve Easter show great determination in defence for the Blackcats against CSU Yellow last weekend.

The Blackcats' winning run of 11 games came to a crashing holt in last weekend's major semi-final against CSU Yellow in Bathurst, but Blackheath has one more chance to advance.

The Cats lost 34-14 to the minor premiers but now know what's required in finals footy.

They started confidently but left their game plan in the dressing shed and were forced to pay the price quickly in the form of three CSU Yellow tries in the opening 20 minutes.

Poor ball control, poor discipline and too many missed tackles cost dearly.

The Cats started to play better footy towards the end of the first half and with better field position were able to respond on the score board through a Matt Ranse try, converted by Greg Nankervis to make it 16 -6.

Coach Jed Jervis revved the boys up during the break and the Cats were unlucky not to score when Ryan Jervis was held up over the line early in the second half.

A dropped ball soon after took the pressure off CSU Yellow, who scored another three tries by the 60th minute, leaving Blackheath with an Everest to climb.

The Cats managed to score the next two tries after great finishing by Thomas Gaspere and Jervis to narrow the gap to 32-14 with 10 minutes left.

A late converted penalty to CSU Yellow made the final margin 20 points.

The Blackheath Players' Player award went to Mark Barratt who played with enormous heart, while Chis Holmes, Grant Rhodes, Steve Easter, Jervis, Gasperee and Ryan Evans tried hard.

In the other semi final, CSU Blue defeated the Lithgow Bears.

That result means the Blackcats have a few days to regroup before they play against CSU Blue in the preliminary final this Saturday at 2.30pm at Don Bradman oval, Blackheath.

This vital match is hosted by Country Rugby League Group 10, so ground entry fees apply. Pensioner/concession tickets are available and kids under 16 can enter for free.

The winner will qualify to play in the grand final against CSU Yellow in Bathurst.

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