The Philadelphia Fight booked their way into the Championship Final by defeating the DC Slayers 32-18 on home soil.
The battle between 2nd and 3rd place (Slayers & Fight) saw neighboring teams collide and newfound rivalries born in semi-finals matchup that didn’t disappoint those that braved torrential weather conditions. While there aren’t any certainties in Rugby League, one thing could be guaranteed that the winner would be off to the Championship Final while the loser will ponder a season that put them within one game of making club history.
The game was a reversal of the Round 5 encounter with the Slayers being the team making uncharacteristic mistakes of dropped the ball in repeated sets of play. The Fight not wasting time when presented with golden opportunities scored in the corner with big Martwain Johnston through some clever play. Some more dropped ball and quick thinking from Fight halfback Joel Weeks saw a timely grubber kick that was pounced on by Sean Staunton in the opposite corner. Thirsty for more, Weeks again was instrumental with his kicking game and this time was rewarded with his own kick and chase scoring out wide.
With the Fight pumped up for more and the Slayers scratching their heads, the Fight put together an impressive set of play that saw lighting fast hands across the paddock and into the corner that had the team in a frenzy. At 22-0 and with the gods applauding, the heavens opened up and changed the conditions quickly presenting an opportunity to the Slayers who desperate for points.
After halftime the Slayers adapted quickly and a converted try saw them with renewed confidence and quicker step in their stride. The slippery conditions didn’t favor the Fight who were slow to change their game plan and the Slayers were back in the game with two quick tries down 26-18.
With one quarter remaining, both teams pounded away at each other through simple sets of play until a costly Slayers penalty saw Fight Captain Matt Webster carry three men over the line to score and seal their victory.
The win sees the Fight into their first Championship Final since 2000 and on home soil. MVP of the game Joel Weeks was quick to praise his team for their efforts. “Today is an incredible feeling and it’s special to be a part of this club but we still have one more game to go.”
Final Score Philadelphia Fight 32 defeated the DC Slayers 18
The Championship final is on Saturday August 27th 3pm
Gates open at 12pm with pre-game match and activities
For information about tickets, click here.