In a match where the lead changed several times, it was the Broncos NYC side who prevailed 33-30 over the young pups at Suncorp Stadium.
Eleven minutes into the match the young pups opened their account with lock forward Piki Rogers crashing over. It looked as though they had scored the play before through centre Reimis Smith but he was brought down close to the line. On the next play, with compressed defence, Garlick pushed it one wide and Rogers went over to score. Brad Keighran converted to put the blue and whites up 6-nil.
Four minutes later the lead was extended through back rower Harry Pondekas. Off the back of a penalty, the set started in good field territory and a few simple rucks through the middle and he went over to score. Keighran again converted from just to the right of the uprights, with the scoreboard reading 12-nil.
Both of those tries were cancelled out soon after, with the Broncos crossing for two quick tries through Jai Arrow and Jordan Drew. Ashley Taylor could only convert one of the tries with the Bulldogs holding on to a slender 12-10 lead.
Jayden Okunbor scored off the back a great pass in the 29th minute where he flew on to it and went over untouched. Keighran couldn’t convert from out wide with the lead now 16-10.
It was tit for tat out there and Drew palmed his way past two defenders to score. Taylor converted, putting the home side 18-16 in front.
Reimis Smith scored off the back of a mid-field bomb in the 37th minute. It was batted back on the 20m line into Smith’s hands and he went the remainder of the distance untouched to score. The try couldn’t be converted with another shift in lead, 20-18.
The lead was shortlived and with the siren sounding in the background, fullback Josh Bergamin spilled the ball on impact and Taylor ran 15m to score. He converted his own try with the Broncos going to the break leading 24-20.
After the break, the young pups scored two tries in the opening 14 minutes. Siaopo Tagaloa went over in the 43rd minute and then Okunbor grabbed his second of the night, 11 minutes later. Keighran could only convert the first of those tries, with the Bulldogs back in front, 30-24.
Scores were level soon after when winger Nikau Te’rupe leaped above Okunbor in the in-goal area to score. Taylor converted with the scoreboard reading 30-all.
With four minutes remaining and 22m out, Taylor took the field goal attempt, which was successful, putting the home side in front 31-30.
A penalty in front with 90 seconds remaining extended the lead out to three points but more importantly soaked up the time, giving the Broncos the victory.
BRONCOS 33 (Drew 2, Arrow, Taylor Tries; Taylor 5 Goals; Taylor 1 Field Goal)
BULLDOGS 30 (Okunbor 2, Rogers, Pondekas, Tagaloa Tries; Keighran 5 Goals)
At: Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane