8 August, 2022
Mareeba charges through in cup
DESPITE not winning a game during their first season in the Aaron Payne Cup, Mareeba’s hopes are high with their younger Cowboys Challenge team securing a win against Mackay and moving through to the semifinals.
As the youngest school to compete in the highly competitive rugby league competition, Mareeba had initially marked Mackay State High School as their goal for this year’s competition, the latest team to enter the competition besides Mareeba.
Playing last Thursday, Mareeba’s year 11-12 Aaron Payne Cup side unfortunately went down 32-12 against the more experienced Mackay line-up, both teams had remained winless prior to the game.
Coach Clint Cifuentes said heading into the game against Mackay, the players had been the most pumped up and competitive they had been all competition.
“The game was probably one of their best as far as competitiveness goes and we are a lot better with the experience the competition has brought,” he said.
In comparison the younger Cowboys Challenge team was a bit hesitant before heading into their match but once they started to warm up, they played together well.
The side slipped into a rhythm, playing the game just like another game of club competition and managed to put up a 16-12 win over Mackay, securing Mareeba a spot in the semifinals.
“The boys started the game tentatively but once they got through the first five minutes they realised they were right in the game,” Mr Cifuentes said.
“They went into their normal routines they do with club and came over the top of Mackay.
“Their win and their venture into the finals is going to give the team a really good foundation to build off next year.”
The core of the Aaron Payne Cup side will remain together heading into next year’s competition with nearly half the Cowboys Challenge team stepping up into the older competition.