Rested Rangers hold on against reigning premiers
IPSWICH are back in the winner's circle after a tense 26-21 victory over the reigning Barber Cup premiers Caboolture.
The win didn't come easy, with the Rangers made to withstand a final onslaught on their own try-line.
With time fast running out, Caboolture pressed their attack but were unable to crack the home team's defence.
"We defended for the last five minutes in our own 22,” Ipswich Rangers coach Tino Anae said.
"It was getting tense and it took a big team effort to keep them out.
"Caboolture are a quality team but we just stuck to our basics and trusted each other to get the result.”
The win sealed a perfect day for Ipswich, with victories in both Barber Cup and Pegg Cup clashes.
Five members of the Reserve Grade squad backed up to play the second game, a huge effort in a physical clash.
"It was a tough game and it took a lot out of the boys,” Anae said.
"We had five guys back up from Pegg and we ended up using all of our substitutions. The Pegg side played extremely well and it was good to win in both grades.”
The Rangers lost one of their starting players to injury on Saturday but will welcome another back in time for next weekend's clash against Pine Rivers.
Undefeated for the season, Pine Rivers have been the form team in both competition grades.
On Saturday the Goodna Gladiators came away with tough losses against Pine Rivers in both grades.
In low-scoring games, it was the Gladiators' first loss of the season in either grade.
Preparing to host the ladder leaders at Woodend Park, Anae said next weekend would be another big test for the Rangers.
"We'll go in with a lot of respect,” he said. "We know we have to work hard this week on our preparation.
"To get a win against the reigning premiers will do us very well for our belief.
"We know what we are in for against Pine Rivers.”
Goodna also return home this weekend against the Wynnum Bugs.
Barber Cup: Ipswich Rangers 26 def Caboolture 21 at Woodend Park; Pine Rivers 15 def Goodna Gladiators 10 at John Oxley Reserve.
Pegg Cup: Ipswich Rangers 34 def Caboolture 7 at Woodend Park; Pine Rivers 20 def Goodna Gladiators 8 at John Oxley Reserve.