'Ice in his veins'
FOR the second time in 2018, Sam Caslick has come to the Jets' rescue with a last-minute field goal to win the match.
The first came in round seven against the Sunshine Coast Falcons - a bomb from near-halfway which had everyone in attendance out of their seats.
And yesterday's Intrust Super Cup sequel at Dolphin Stadium was just as good, if only for what it meant to the Jets' season.
"Sammy has ice running through his veins; and not the amphetamine variety, the cool variety," coach Shane Walker mused.
"He got himself into position, and was under all sorts of pressure but he certainly didn't show it.
"He had very little margin for error, with players coming from either side. But he stepped himself into the hole and slotted it."
Caslick's 79th-minute strike was the perfect punctuation to a see-sawing, highly entertaining contest between two sides stacked with talent.
The Jets opened the scoring courtesy of a Ben White behind-the-back flick pass to send Marmin Barba over for a historic try.
White's quick hands gifted the Jets winger his 66th try in green and white, bringing Barba one shy of Donald Malone's club record of 67 four-pointers.
The layman observer may have wondered aloud whether White' pass was luck, or a skill hidden deep in his bag of tricks.
Walker set the record straight.
"Oh he definitely does," Walker said.
"When he first came to us, he used to play on the right-hand side. I can only imagine he grew up idolising Matt Gidley, because every pass he made was a flick pass.
"We had to rename him Benny 'Two Hands' White to get him to pass with both hands."
The Jets' 6-0 advantage was short-lived, as the hosts found the line twice prior to halftime to go into the sheds up 14-8 at the break.
And the Dolphins looked poised to extend their advantage just after the restart, but for Richard Pandia's desperation.
"On our right-hand flank, they stripped us of numbers, and Jonus Pearson dove through the air," Walker recalled.
"Richard threw his body at him - I think he collected him with his hands, then his head - and put him into the touch-in-goal line. That saved a try."
But Pearson would return to wreak havoc on the Jets, stepping outside Wes Conlon and racing down the touchline with only Michael Purcell chasing as the covering tackler.
It was a commentator's dream to call a footrace between the two speedsters, and Walker thought it was fitting Scott Sattler was the man on the microphone yesterday.
"It was quite poignant Scott Sattler was commentating the game. The best way to describe it would be a tackle similar to what he did on Todd Byrne in the (2003) grand final," Walker said.
"When Jonus got around Wes and was sailing down the sideline, in my mind when he beat Wes I'd almost conceded Purcy wouldn't have much hope.
"But he positioned himself beautifully and came in with an outstanding tackle. That went a long way toward us winning the game."
Not to be forgotten, Barba crossed to restore parity in the 71st minute - drawing level with Malone on 67 career tries for the Jets in the process - before Caslick iced the game minutes later.
"It's great to see Marms return to confidence and therefore form," Walker said.
"You don't ever lose your ability, you only ever lose confidence. And he's certainly found that again.
"He's an out-and-out finisher. Despite the fact he has such a big influence in terms of tries, he doesn't have a hell of a lot involvement.
"I think giving him the responsibility of kicking has helped bring him into the game."
Intrust Super Cup: Ipswich Jets 15 (Marmin Barba 2 tries, Marmin Barba 3 goals, Sam Caslick field goal) def. Redcliffe Dolphins 14 (Bryce Donovan, Tom Opacic tries; Kotoni Staggs 3 goals) at Dolphin Stadium.