BIG PALM: Gladstone under-18 Braiden Harrison fends off the Highlands' defence in a previous game.
BIG PALM: Gladstone under-18 Braiden Harrison fends off the Highlands' defence in a previous game. Matt Taylor GLA300618LEAG

Bundy Bears claim victors' plate in Gladstone raid

RUGBY LEAGUE: Gladstone Raiders under-18s almost added the 47th Battalion Plate to its trophy cabinet - only to lose narrowly to Bundaberg Bears.

Despite overcast conditions, drizzling rain and slippery conditions, Gladstone Raiders put up a good fight against Bundaberg Bears who were too strong and came away 13-6 winners.

Gladstone Raiders came out strong from the first whistle and tried to get a roll on to dominate the game.

The pressure paid off for Gladstone Raiders when Mitch Brown grabbed an intercept try and converted it to gain a 6-0 lead.

It was some great Gladstone Raiders' defence that pushed the Bundaberg Bears attack into knocking the ball and handing over possession.

Bundaberg Bears got back into the game when five-eighth Jack Larter scored in the corner and Rigan Nielsen converted to level the scores at half time.

The second half produced an exciting display of football in wet weather with neither side backing down from the other.

The Bundaberg Bears took the advantage of a Gladstone Raiders' poor possession and turned it into a try scoring advantage and was awarded a penalty try.

Nielsen missed the conversion attempt but didn't miss the following conversion attempt from in front of goal posts to take the lead out to 12-6.

The final 10 minutes of the game was a high tempo of attack and defence by both teams not wanting to lose grip of a tight game.

Gladstone Raiders came narrowly close to scoring a try to stay in the game but the Bundaberg Bears were too strong in defence.

Bundaberg Bears player Will Tanwan put over a cheeky last- second field goal before the final hooter to close out the game.

Gladstone Raiders coach Colin Gaston was proud of the effort the young players put on the paddock.

"They were outstanding, never stopped trying and a terrific group of young men,” he said.

"The future of Gladstone rugby league is in good hands when you see the depth and talent on offer.”

The winner of the under-18 47th Battalion Cup was Toowoomba Clydesdale over Roma District, 22-8.