MANU Vatuvei scored a try double and Shaun Johnson starred in the rain as the Warriors up-and-down season continued with a 30-16 win over the Panthers at Centrebet Stadium last night.
Both teams defied the terrible conditions at the foot of the Blue Mountains to score eight tries between them.
Vatuvei scored his double inside 18 minutes, scoring after Ryan Simpkins mistake on 10 minutes before touching down from a Shaun Johnson grubber kick eight minutes later.
James Maloney converted both tries to make the score 12-0 and it looked like it would be 18-0 as the Warriors camped on the Panthers' line but an intercept try from Josh Mansour changed the shape of the game and with 35 minutes gone the home side was in front after scoring three tries inside eight minutes.
Kevin Kingston scored after good work from Luke Walsh before Brad Tighe broke through some shocking Warriors tackling which eventually led to Geoff Daniela to score after some good handling in the wet from the Panthers.
It was 16-12 to the home side at half-time but something had to give as both teams had failed to win a game this season after trailing at the break.
Vatuvei was controversially ruled to have knocked on when he won the race to touch down a Johnson grubber when he appeared to have grounded the ball.
But there was no doubt about Konrad Hurrell's four-pointer after he swooped on a dropped ball by the Panthers to race home and score under the posts.
James Maloney extended the lead with 15 minutes left when he burst through and touched down before converting his own try.
Then Kevin Locke announced his comeback from injury to round off the scoring racing on to a super chip through from Feleti Mateo to score under the posts.