By ADAM WRATTEN
MURWILLUMBAH produced its best football of the season yesterday to overpower benchmark Lismore side Marist Brothers 40-14.
Fullback Shannon Murphy led the way scoring two tries.
However it was the performance of the Mustang's frontrowers which set the foundation for the team's seventh win in this year's Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League compe- tition.
The result keeps the Mustangs joint leaders of the competition after the first eight rounds with Seagulls, who had a convincing win on its first lengthy road trip away to Casino yesterday.
In other games involving Tweed teams, there were convincing wins for both South Tweed and Cudgen who thumped Grafton and Kyogle respectively.
At Stan Sercombe Oval, the Mustangs forwards dominated.
Coach Con Theodossiou said while his side was guilty of coughing up possession in the first half, things clicked in the second stanza. "That was our best performance this year," Theodossiou said.
MURWILLUMBAH forward Robert Reid led the charge yesterday as the Mustangs stepped up a gear against Lismore's Marist Brothers at Stan Sercombe Oval.
Cheered on by another big home crowd, Reid and the other forwards smashed Marist Brothers from the first minute to the last in a 40-14 win.
While the Mustangs were guilty of not completing sets in the first period they turned on the style in the second, running in five tries in a seven-try-totwo victory.
Reid said it was a good win, against a strong side.
"That was a tough game and it was pretty quick," Reid said.
"We had to really knuckle down. I think it was our work in defence which won us the game."
He said the Mustangs' forward pack would have to back up again next week when Ballina make the trip to Stan Sercombe Oval.
"They should be a big test," Reid said.
"In the next two games we have got them and South Grafton."
In yesterday's game, big forward Lyndon Murphy opened the scoring after 15 minutes of bruising football.
Marist Brothers hit back soon after. Firstly with a converted penalty then a try to Nicko Vahawawara to take an 8-6 lead.
With half-time approaching Shannon Murphy bagged the first of his two tries (the second was a wonderful 80-metre dash mid-way through the second half) and Matt Harley scored to give the Mustangs a 16-8 lead at the break.
A try to centre Jason Willis five minutes into the second period killed off the game as a contest and the Mustangs ran in four more tries.
MURWILLUMBAH 40 (Tries, S Murphy 2, J Willis, L Murphy, S Kirkham, L Foster, A Pollard; Goals, B Wann 4) d MARIST BROTHERS 14 (Tries, N Vahawawara, S Andrews; Goals A Cooley 2). RESERVE: Murwillumbah 40 d Marist Brothers 16. UNDER-18: Murwillumbah 32 d Marist Brothers 24.