Panthers out on top
THE cheers of the Panthers' boys in the locker room could have been heard from Gladstone as the A Grade team defeated Fitzroy Gracemere Sharks in a 76-nil win on Saturday afternoon.
"It was awesome, just amazing,” coach Ryan Wilson said.
"The boys were great and we stuck to our structure and it worked out well for us.”
The win was even more special as the crowds flocked for the Biloela Panthers Rugby League Football Club 20 year anniversary on Saturday.
"Especially on today for the 20 year, it's a good day to win,” Ryan said.
"That is the best thing about the Panthers, best crowds, best support and it makes it even better to play home games.”
Club president Pat Barron was overwhelmed by the crowds that came out to celebrate the Panthers' legacy with ex-players coming from far and wide, everywhere from Brisbane to Townsville.
"I am really, really happy,” Pat said.
"Didn't expect this many people; I am just absolutely wrapt.”
The A Grade boys played their game in commemorative jerseys, replicas of the 1997 jerseys, each sponsored by local businesses.
The jerseys were auctioned off through the crowd after the game, raising a fair swag of money for the club.
A calcutta auction was also held on the Friday night and the bar was emptied.
"It is just amazing to see so much support from the locals,” Pat said.
The Panthers Reserves played against Calliope Roosters, drawing at 18 all.
The Under 20s also played Fitzroy Gracemere Sharks coming out on top with a 28- 26 win.
"Two good games, the Reserves played really well, and they are building and the A Grade and Under 20s are good,” Pat said.
"So a great effort from all three grades winning and reserve grade drawing.
"And just look at this crowd.”
With plenty of planning and preparation involved for the two day event last weekend, Pat tried to say he wouldn't be involved in the next one.
"There probably will be 30 year celebrations and I say I don't want to be involved in planning that one but I will probably get roped into it,” Pat said.
"I just love my footy too much.”