Undefeated Raymond Terrace Magpies sink Hawks to bring home Newcastle-Hunter B Grade premiership

Triumphant Raymond Terrace Magpies skipper Luke Handsaker holds aloft the B Grade premiership trophy.

THE RAYMOND Terrace Magpies are the toast of Port Stephens after securing back-to-back rugby league premierships in the Newcastle-Hunter Conference.

James Ross’ mighty Magpies were crowned B Grade champions for 2023 after skittling rivals Abermain Hawks 16-6 in last Saturday’s Grand Final at Lakeside Sporting Complex.

The premiership triumph caps off an incredible winning streak for the Magpies who remained undefeated this season and having tasted defeat just once during the team’s past two campaigns.

Superbly led by their half back maestro and inspirational skipper Luke Handsaker, the well drilled Raymond Terrace warriors showed why they are rated one of the finest rugby league combinations in the Hunter region with another stout hearted display of skill and raw power to lift the trophy.

An emotional Ross – the Magpies respected Head Coach – told News Of The Area that his brave charges “shared an unbreakable bond that swept the side to premiership glory”.

“The boys deserve all the accolades – they play with an unbridled passion and have shown their supremacy during a golden period for the club,” a proud Ross reflected.

“A feature of our campaign this year was the team spirit and connection between the players who pledged at the start of the competition to go all the way,” he said.

“From the outset we found a winning groove and proved hard to beat,” Ross added.

Skilful Magpies five eighth Kyle Handford was judged best on ground.

Abermain jumped to an early 6-0 lead with a converted try by fullback Bryce Field before the Magpies hit back with tries by Handford and winger Joel Osborn to grab a 10-6 advantage at the break.

With the rugged Raymond Terrace forwards led by Daine Walker and Jackson MacIntyre taking control and the classy Handford creating havoc there was no stopping the black and whites.

The Magpies sealed victory when centre Robert Chaffey dashed over to score during the second half with Handford adding the extras.

A lion-hearted Handsaker played most of the match in discomfort but showed his leadership qualities with a non-stop display in the number seven jumper.

By Chris KARAS

A jubilant, all-conquering Raymond Terrace Magpies team celebrate their Newcastle-Hunter B Grade premiership win at Lakeside Sporting Complex.

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