Warriors go down to Penrith in Hamilton

DAVID LONG
Last updated 17:53 16/02/2013
Manu Vatuvei
CHRIS HILLOCK/FAIRFAX NZ
TRY TIME: Manu Vatuvei celebrates scoring a try for the Warriors.

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The Warriors have lost their second trial game of the season, going down 32-18 to the Penrith Panthers at Waikato Stadium.

The Ivan Cleary coached Panthers scored six tries to four from the Warriors and were deserved winners in a match played in front of a crowd of 12,000 in Hamilton.

A week ago the Warriors went down 42-24 to the Gold Coast Titans, so it could be said that they have lost their last 10 games, including the end of the 2013 season.

However, it is still too early to judge the impact new coach Matt Elliott is having on the side, as this was just a trial after all and it won't be until they play Parramatta in the season opener on March 9 that results will really count.

The first try came from some wonderful play by Shaun Johnson, who put up a kick, re-gathered it and then put boot to ball again to give Manu Vatuvei the points.

In the 12th minute the Panthers struck back with a try to Josh Mansour in the corner, capitalising on an overlap and Luke Walsh's conversion putting his side up 6-4.

Former Warrior Lewis Brown scored the next try as the Panthers broke down the left side, going 60m without any of their players being touched.

Penrith's third came in the same corner with Brown getting his second a few minutes into the second quarter and six minutes before halftime David Simmons got the Panthers' next try.

It was an awful half from the Warriors, with too many errors made on attack, while defensively they fell off a number of tackles and at 22-4 down the game was lost.

But they did show some resolve and seven minutes into the second half Ngami Laumape scored for the Warriors.

The attempted comeback was halted when Lachlan Coote scooped up a ball dropped by Johnson to race 40m for the next Penrith try.

The Warriors did score next though, with Vatuvei putting him into space with a nice pass inside from the final play of the third quarter.

Glen Fisiiahi latched onto a Johnson kick for the Warriors' next try, while the final points game from a Geoff Daniella four-pointer.

Earlier in the day the Junior Warriors beat Waicoa Bay 50-12, with Viliami Lolohea, Tuimoala Lolohea and Abraham Papalii and grabbing two tries apiece.

Warriors 18 (Manu Vatuvei, Ngami Laumape, Kevin Locke, Glen Fisiiahi tries; Shaun Johnson con) Penrith 32 (Josh Mansour, Lewis Brown 2, David Simmons, Lachlan Coote, Goeff Daniella tries; Luke Walsh 2 cons, Wes Naiqama con, Blake Austin con) HT: 4-22

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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