Macquarie Scorpions, Dora Creek and Wyong Roos all enjoyed wins in their respective competitions in what was a happy weekend for local rugby league fans.
Macquarie downed Maitland 16-10 in a drama-charged Newcastle Rugby League clash at Lyall Peacock Field on Saturday.
Macquarie led 16-nil at the break after Matt Hay, Andrew Sumner and Kyle Tracey scored for the home team in a rousing first-half display on Old Boys Day for the Scorpions.
Macquarie maintained their resolve in a tense second half which saw Maitland fight back hard, and players from each team sin binned.
The win moved Macquarie off the bottom of the premiership ladder on points for-and-against.
The Scorpions will take on premiership favourites Wests in the final round at Harker Oval on Sunday.
In the Newcastle and Hunter Rugby League A-Grade competition, Dora Creek had a nice tune-up for finals football when they overpowered Waratah Cheetahs 50-4 at Neville Thompson Oval on Saturday.
The minor premiers led 20-4 at halftime and produced a near-flawless second stanza to put the Cheetahs away.
Coach David Hoban again plotted a match plan that his players executed smartly.
"Waratah are a massive team so kicking early in the tackle count and turning the big bodies around was important," Hoban said.
"We also wanted to play really fast and then catch them on the edges with some quick ball movement."
In the opening exchanges, Waratah played with the desperation of a team striving to play finals football.
But with the home team leading 14-4 just before half time, halfback Boston Smith raced 35 metres to score under the posts to give Dora Creek a 20-4 lead at the break.
Dora Creek's potent left-side attack proved hard to handle in the second stanza.
"The second half was pretty to watch. We piled on 30 unanswered points," Hoban said.
"The most pleasing part of the second half was our defence and patience with the football. We moved the ball around fantastically, particularly to our left side.
"We scored some really smart tries. Centre Todd Murphy, back-rower Kye Howarth and halfback and Man of the Match Boston Smith caused all sorts of havoc. Winger Sam Agalidis had a field day benefiting from this to score three tries."
Dora Creek will enjoy a rest this weekend before preparing for the grand-final qualifier against the winner of Belmont and Windale who play this Saturday.
And in Central Coast Rugby League, Wyong overcame the absence of halves Terence Seuseu and Luke Sharpe to outpoint Kincumber Colts 36-20 at Morry Breen Field on Sunday.