The Illawarra Steelers SG Ball side has suffered a tough loss to the Tweed Seagulls in the National Under 18 Championship game.
The Steelers travelled up to Brisbane as the NSW champions after taking out the SG Ball grand final at Bankwest Stadium a week earlier, however their Queensland rivals proved too good to run out 48-14 winners.
The match was hotly contested throughout the early stages, however the Seagulls were able to overpower their opponents and run away with the game in the second half.
While the Steelers struggled to replicate their grand final performance, Tweed coach Tim Maccan said after the game that his side produced their best performance of the season in the fixture.
"It was fantastic, definitely their best win of the season - they stuck to the game plan for the whole game and got the job done," Maccan said.
"We knew we had to stick with them in that first half there and the rewards would come if we were patient and persistent with it and that's showed in the back end of the second half.
"We have been building and we have some very good individual players and it was about us trying to work out the best way to turn them into a very good team and how to use those strengths across the team.
"Our starting front rowers Ben Liyou and Solomon Torrens, kids that some people haven't heard of, they are great kids and showed that they are quality front rowers.
"We have guys on the bench like James Torrens and Issy Higgins - he's only 17 - but they have been doing a really good job, so of those lesser known players have really stepped up."
Tyrell Sloan was among the Steelers best, with the winger crossing for a double, while centre Max Feagai also scored a try.
Tweed halfback Toby Sexton was named man of the match, with the schoolboy orchestrating the Seagulls attack as they ran in eight tries to three.
The teenager has a bright future and will eventually make the move south, with the Bulldogs already signing Sexton to a contract.
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