RUGBY LEAGUE

Saints go marching big time

Grand final wins makes history

Picture

St Marys cross the line for another try in their win against Mounties in the Sydney Shield grand final. Picture: Danny Aarons

ST MARYS Rugby League Club has taken out the 2017 Sydney Shield for the first time in the club’s history.

The club defeated Mounties 34-20 at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday.

Coach of the young side, Luke Swain, said the win was “really exciting”, given it was only St Marys’ second year in the competition.

“I am very proud. The win rewards their hard work,” Swain, a former NRL player, said. “(The atmosphere) was pure happiness. We were always confident but for these young guys to get that experience was great.

“Some of the players have won a lot of competitions through St Marys but some hadn’t played a grand final, so they were really happy.”

The premiers showed great commitment and, despite working full-time jobs, were training three times a week ahead of the big clash. The Saints, a Penrith Panthers feeder team, went in hard with their attack and led 22-6 at halftime.

The Mt Pritchard side pushed hard to make a comeback in the second half, but St Marys, which has “some really good halves and fast outside backs”, finished strong to earn the win.

“Everybody played their role, there wasn’t anyone out there on the field who had a poor game - which is what you want for a grand final,” Swain said.

The side will take a break and commence pre-season training in November.

‘‘ Everybody played their role. There wasn’t anyone out there on the field who had a poor game.
Luke Swain