Footy warning: Goodna juggernaut to get even better
SELF-confessed rugby league traveller Kaustio Magele is thriving on a new challenge spending time with the Goodna Eagles juggernaut this season.
But after watching eight different teammates score to maintain the Eagles' unbeaten record, Magele fired a warning to Goodna's other Rugby League Ipswich Volunteers opponents.
"The result is good but if we are honest, we're probably not happy with our performance,'' the hooker said after Goodna's latest 44-28 victory over the Gatton Hawks.
"It's still like the other teams are getting better every week and we are sort of a bit stagnant at the moment. But we will work on it and we'll be better.''
Goodna completed their fourth consecutive victory over the Hawks with tries coming from Mika Iakopo, John Schwalger, Liva Toelupe, Trivendra Naidu, Elone Taufa, Fa'ata'ape Timai, David Iopu and Vesi Sa'u.
Goodna were lethal from all parts of the field.
Magele rated one of second half strikes among the most satisfying.
"Probably David Iopu. He's the younger brother of one of the boys who played A Grade last year,'' the Eagles rake said.
"He just took it out from the 40 and really just ran the ball up for us and he got a meat pie out of it. It was a really great effort.''
Even with the Eagles 12-0 down in the first half against enthusiastic opponents, Magele was confident Goodna would recover.
"I knew once it turned, we would have a long stint of some really good footy,'' he said.
The competition pacesetters did just that in the blustery conditions with six unanswered tries in the second half before Gatton ran in some late consolation efforts.
"The boys just had to get the hard work done first,'' Magale said.
"It was really good to see.
"It shows how dangerous we are but it's very disappointing we conceded 20 something points every game. That's not good enough.''
Magele has been with Goodna "on and off' for five years as "I travel quite a lot''.
The accomplished footballer grew up in New Zealand and Sydney "moving along with the South Logan float''.
Aged 31, he's revelling in his new role alongside stalwarts like captain Ramon Filipine in a Goodna side rich in youth talent.
"We were old boys here and we're just out helping the juniors and we're loving it,'' Magele said.
"There's definitely some good young players and it's really good. It's just given us (older players) that hunger too.
"These kids are just coming to training and really intense. It gives us a bit of a leg up. I love it.
"I'll try and hang out with the young fellas and keep my youth about me while I can.''
He has shared in premierships at different stages, including with Swifts 10 years ago.
He converted from lock to hooker.
"Everyone outgrew me really quick. I've been the same size since I was like 16, he said.
In the fourth round clash, Gatton were the team first onto the field keen to build on recent improvement.
They looked like causing an upset on their early form before Goodna muscled up in defence and attack to restore a 24-12 halftime advantage.
Even with 12 men after Vesi Sa'u was sin-binned for 10 minutes in the second half, Goodna rolled on after asserting their authority.
The Eagles had opened the second half where they left off with centre Taufa dashing down the sideline to put Goodna further ahead inside first two minutes of return to play.
Aufaga-Toomaga's difficult conversion put Goodna up 30-12.
Timai was next to cross out wide to extend Goodna's lead to 36-12 after another successful conversion to the incredibly accurate fullback.
In the first half, Gatton hooker Brandon Clarke found a hole in Goodna defence and sliced through to score the opening try of the match inside five minutes.
He finished the match with a double.
RLI Volunteers Cup: Goodna Eagles 44 (Mika Iakopo, John Schwalger, Liva Toelupe, Trivendra Naidu, Elone Taufa, Fa'ata'ape Timai, David Iopu, Vesi Sa'u tries; Bessie Aufaga-Toomaga 6 goals) def Gatton Hawks 28 (Brandon Clarke 2, Shannon Hicks, Lachlan Gorman, Tyson White tries; Dylan Flanagan 4 goals) at North Ipswich Reserve.