ALBURY Thunder is paying the price for their 40-12 win over Young with star duo David Cowhan and Shannon Rupapere injured during the victory at Alfred Oval on Saturday.
Cowhan (knee) and Rupapere (shoulder) sat out the second-half as Thunder piled on six unanswered tries to score their best win of the season.
“I’m not too sure how bad it is,” Cowhan said.
“I’ll try and get it looked at tomorrow.
“It’s pretty swollen but hopefully it’s alright.”
The timing of the injury couldn’t be any worse for Cowhan who was set to play for the Riverina under-23s in the Country Championships at West Wyalong later this week.
“Hopefully I can just strap it up and play on,” he said.
Hooker Andrew Smith was also injured during the match.
After scoring two tries apiece in the first half, the teams were locked at 12-all at halftime, but the Thunder blasted the Cherrypickers off the park in the second session to send an ominous warning to competition favourites Gundagai and Southcity.
In-form forward Levi Freeman was dominant for the victors while captain-coach Tuki Jackson, halfback Mac Daly and fullback Etu Uaisele also stood up in the second-half.
Freeman has started the season in sensational fashion with many believing he could challenge for the Weissel Medal.
“The boys played really well,” Cowhan said.
“It’s always hard at Young.
“They scored an early try and sometimes we can lose focus but we bounced back really well.
“Everyone really stepped up.”
Young got the perfect start when rookie Lachlan Jackson scored a try in the fifth minute, but the Thunder struck with two quick tries to hit the front 12-6 in the 28th minute.
However, Young halfback Ray Talimalie scored a brilliant solo try in the 31st minute to allow the Cherrypickers to get on level footing again.
But Albury had all the answers – and all the points – in the second half.
“We just got on a bit of a roll,” Cowhan said.
“It was a good win.”
Uaisele, Lachie Hampton and Daly scored two tries each for Albury while Jon Huggett and Joe Silafau crossed the line once.
Albury is entrenched in the top-three after six rounds and is favoured to defeat Kangaroos at Greenfield Park on Sunday.
it will be the first time premiership star Ben Jeffery has played at the ground for points since leaving Thunder at the end of last season.
Thunder take on the Bulls the following week at Wagga.