Sydney University took another step up the Shute Shield ladder with a 31-20 win over Northern Suburbs in their Round 6 clash at North Sydney Oval on Saturday.

The win came off the back of a dominant pack, with the Students scoring three first-half tries to lead 24-6 at the break.

Halfback Jake Gordon took advantage of an early forward surge from a five-metre scrum on the Northern Suburbs line to dart over near the posts. Second-rower Byron Hodge converted and followed up with a penalty goal to have the Students leading 10-nil in as many minutes.

Gordon had a hand in the second try when the University halves took a blindside option to send winger Henry Clunies-Ross on an excursion down the right flank. He dived over in the corner with defenders clinging to him. Hodges’ conversion pushed the score to 17-3.

Norths five-eighth Joshua Kaye kept the hosts in touch with two penalty goals, but the Students stretched the lead to 24-6 just before the break when a pick-and-drive mission inside the opposition quarter resulted in number eight Mitchell Whiteley crossing for a five-pointer.

Norths staged a two-try comeback mission early in the second half to bring the scores to 24-20. Winger Richard Woolf latched on to an intercept to run away for a try before a Norths surge resulted in a penalty try when a maul was brought down near the University line. Both tries were converted by Kay to put the issue in the balance.

But any team with a dominant scrum should not panic and when the Students set up camp near Norths, a succession of scrum penalties resulted in a penalty try and a bonus point to boot.

The win lifted Sydney University to sixth place on the ladder, in striking distance of the competition leaders. Defending premiers Eastwood head the Shute Shield on 29 points, with Manly (27), Randwick (25), Northern Suburbs (20), Southern Districts (20) and Sydney University (15) making up the top six.

With Second, Third and Fourth grades and the three Colts sides all sitting in the top four, Sydney University are now fourth on the coveted Club Championship on 865 points, behind Randwick on 1064, Eastwood (1046) and Manly (931).

Next week’s mission doesn’t get any easier, with Sydney University hosting Randwick at No.1 Oval on Saturday.


Sydney Men’s Premier competition – Round 6

First Grade: Sydney University 31 (Pen try, Mitchell Whiteley, Jake Gordon, Henry Clunies-Ross tries; Byron Hodge 3 goals, pen goal; Angus Roberts goal) d Northern Suburbs 20 (Pen try, Richard Woolf tries; Joshua Kay 2 goals, 2 pen goals)  at North Sydney Oval on Saturday.

Second Grade: Sydney University 52 (Sam Quinn 2, Jorden Mose, Angus Koerstz, Jock Merriman, James Swan, Matthew Narracott, Angus Roberts tries; Angus Roberts 6 goals) d Northern Suburbs 12 (Tim Duchesne, Mitchell Walton tries; Corey Tulloch goal).

Third Grade: Sydney University 34 (Andrew Hunter, Hugh Frazer, John Mokofisi, Joshua Friend tries; Will Macklin 4 goals, 2 pen goals) d Northern Suburbs 3 (Josh Smith pen goal).

Fourth Grade: Sydney University 18 (Malachy Mullin, Jack Leger-Ryan tries; Tom Wilson goal, pen goal; Thomas Gilbert pen goal) d Northern Suburbs 14 (Daniel Hiep 2 tries; Cale Holmes 2 goals).


First Grade: Northern Suburbs 25 d Sydney University 22.

Second Grade: Sydney University 26 d Northern Suburbs 5.

Third Grade: Sydney University 8 d Northern Suburbs 7.