NEWCASTLE’S NRL season might be over but their lower grades are alive and well.
In NSW Cup, the Knights – bolstered by the late inclusion of veteran prop Dane Tilse – scored an emphatic 40-18 win against North Sydney in their elimination final.
Experienced Brendan Elliott scored two tries for the Knights, while halfback Will Pearsall and youngster Nick Meaney also featured in the scoresheet.
Newcastle are expected to have prop Tyrone Amey and playmaker Jack Cogger on deck this week after both played in first grade on Sunday.
Newcastle’s under-20s, meanwhile, snared seventh spot in the finals after a courageous last-round win against minor premiers Cronulla.
Needing a victory to make the top eight, Newcastle trailed until midway through the second half before a powerful finish. They will play sixth-placed Brisbane in a do-or-die final this week.
“To beat Cronulla, who were clear minor premiers, to get there was a great result,’’ Knights coach Nathan Brown said.
A number of eligible under-20 players – including Cogger, Brock Lamb and Sam Stone – have been playing in Newcastle’s senior grades.