With former president Ged Roods again watching on from above, Wauchope Blues kept pace with the clock for the opening 40 minutes as they belted Taree City 66-12 at Lank Bain Sporting Complex on Saturday.
The Group 3 rugby league ladder leaders raced out to a 38-6 lead at the break before they finished with another three tries in the final 10 minutes to put the icing on the cake.
Wauchope are 'Playing for Ged' in 2021 and if their opening 10 rounds of the competition are any indication, they're going to take some stopping.
Co-captains Mat Bird and Beau Kettle led the scoring spree with three tries apiece as the Blues start to switch their focus to the semi-finals in four weeks' time.
"We've already started thinking about our run into the finals and I feel like we've got a bit of an easy run which I'm not overly happy with, not that I think any team is going to be easy," Bird said.
"But because we are on top, people are going to come after us."
Bird said a photo in the dressing room of his good mate provided a huge motivation for the team.
"We've got our little mate Geddy on the wall so he's a big spark for a lot of us, but we want to be here with each other."Mat Bird
"We've got our little mate Geddy on the wall so he's a big spark for a lot of us, but we want to be here with each other," Bird said.
"We're not playing footy for money, we're not doing any of that. We're here because we enjoy each other's company and it's right through the club this year.
"I'm super proud to be a part of it."
Teenage winger Nathan Carroll scored his first try in first grade after full-time as the Blues ran in 12 tries to two.
Bird was again immense in the forwards alongside Kettle, while hooker Tyrell Scott had arguably his best game in first grade.
"Tyrell is coming along in leaps and bounds ... I'm really impressed with him," Bird said.
"He's a young kid coming through and we were able to blood a few 18 year old's this week too with Jack Mansfield and Nathan Carroll who scored his first try on debut which was a good moment."
Bulls captain Trae Clarke paid the Blues the ultimate compliment after his side was simply outclassed. They had no answers, but they never stopped trying.
"I think (Wauchope) can win it if they stay injury-free. They were close in the years prior and they seem to be sharper this year," he said.
"I think (Wauchope) can win it if they stay injury-free. They were close in the years prior and they seem to be sharper this year."Trae Clarke
Taree City's cause wasn't helped by the absence of up to seven regular first graders, but Clarke remained confident the Bulls were heading in the right direction.
"Behind the scenes we're making headway every training session," he said.
"The two points at the weekend are lacking and if you're going off scoreboards, it looks like we haven't improved much, but behind the scenes we are.
"I'm really looking forward to finishing this year and building next year because we won't be starting from Ground Zero.
"We'll have a bit of a head start."
Forwards Harry Wallis, Rob Mason and Samual Burnes were the Bulls' best.
"Harry played 80 minutes as a front-rower, but three quarters of our forward pack had a great game and if I could pick a couple it'd be Harry and Rob Mason," Clarke said.
"The effort is there, it's just the polish that's missing."
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