Rams break Bluey hearts

Shamrocks captain Tristan Storm is collared by Kiama’s Sam Moore on Saturday.  Picture: ANDY ZAKELI
Shamrocks captain Tristan Storm is collared by Kiama’s Sam Moore on Saturday. Picture: ANDY ZAKELI


Camden coach Brendan Schoupp believes his side shrugged off any lingering effects of a premiership hangover with Saturday's courageous last-second road win over the Wollongong Vikings.

The Rams trailed by nine with five minutes left before breaking the Blueys' hearts with two unconverted tries for a 27-26 victory.

Camden went into the half-time break with a 12-7 lead only to lose their way against an energised Vikings in the second half.

The home team scored back-to-back tries for a 21-12 lead before a Rams try cut the deficit to four.

Prop Joel Diggins crashed over after sustained pressure to make it 26-17 but the Blueys didn't score again.

Despite the absence of their NSW Country rep players, the Rams wouldn't be denied in crunch time.

"The way we stuck at it and came back was good. It's all about playing for 80 minutes," Schoupp said.

"We probably had the potential to win that game by a lot more but Vikings are a good team.

"They have a good backline and their attack is good. We made a couple of really bad reads in defence and they got on top of us with two quick tries - having a bloke in the sin bin for 10 minutes didn't help.

"To the boys' credit, they got back on top," he said.

"It was a good effort, because we've had a couple of hard weeks, and we've got a group of players now that are putting the hard yards in."

Premiers in 2013 for the first time in 18 years, the Rams didn't exactly charge out of the gate this season.

But after consecutive losses to Kiama and University, the comeback win over the Blueys should do wonders for their confidence.

"I spoke to the group about how last year was last year, and we needed to forget about it," Schoupp said.

"I guess there was a bit of a premiership hangover. Slowly but surely we're getting it out of them, and winning today was a step in the right direction.

"Our plays are starting to click.

"We've got a lot more work to do but we thought this weekend could be the turning point for us to move forward as a group. We just have to keep working hard."

Camden are equal second with Woonona.

"We're very wary it's a top four and you can't afford to get too far behind," Schoupp said.

"We won't be at full strength until the turn of the second round, but it's just about educating the younger guys and getting them moving forward, and building depth in the club. We're going to be better off for it down the track."

Kiama suffered their first loss, going down 21-13 to Shamrocks at Ocean Park. Avondale walloped Bowral 85-5 and Uni beat Tech Waratahs 27-8.


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