Canberra Raiders scored five tries to secure their second NRL victory of the season, defeating Parramatta 30-18 at GIO Stadium on Saturday.
The Raiders had led 22-6 at half-time, but when the Eels came back to 22-18 in the second half the alarm bells started to ring for the home side.
But Raiders rookie winger Nick Cotric clinched the game late on with a brilliant individual effort in which he beat several defenders and after that there was no comeback for the Eels.
Earlier in the half, the Eels had hit back to score twice in the space of five minutes early in the second half.
Their transformation began with a Corey Norman 40/20 before fullback Bevan French broke through the Canberra defence to give Josh Hoffman his first try for the club.
Kaysa Pritchard then benefited from a strong surge from Siosaia Vave to dive over from dummy-half, reducing the margin to four points with almost 30 minutes to play.
The Eels threatened again but couldn’t take the lead before the 18-year-old Cotric came up with the matchwinner.
Croker’s penalty extended the lead to 12 points Blake Austin got his hand under the ball to prevent Norman from scoring three minutes from full-time.
Raiders:, 1 Jack Wighton, 2 Nick Cotric, 3 Jarrod Croker (c), 4 Joseph Leilua, 5 Jordan Rapana, 6 Blake Austin, 7 Aiden Sezer, 8 Junior Paulo, 9 Josh Hodgson, 10 Shannon Boyd, 11 Josh Papalii, 12 Iosia Soliola, 13 Clay Priest, Subs: 14 Adam Clydsdale, 15 Luke Bateman, 16 David Taylor, 17 Joseph Tapine.
Eels: 1 Bevan French, 2 Semi Radrada, 3 Michael Jennings, 4 Brad Takairangi, 5 Josh Hoffman, 6 Clinton Gutherson, 7 Corey Norman, 8 Suaia Matagi, 9 Kaysa Pritchard, 10 Tim Mannah (c), 11 Manu Ma’u, 16 Frank Pritchard, 14 Nathan Brown, Subs:, 13 Beau Scott, 15 Daniel Alvaro, 17 Siosaia Vave, 18 David Gower.
Check out Monday’s League Express for full coverage of the weekend’s NRL action.