Parkes Spacemen storm home to knock off Group 11 champions Forbes

The last time Parkes won a June long weekend clash with Forbes - a 28-18 triumph in 2017 - Jacob Smede had never played a competitive game of rugby league.

But on Sunday the fresh-faced Spacemen winger, only 18 months into his footy career, starred as the hosts ran out 36-22 victors over southern rivals, defending Group 11 champions the Magpies.

In front of what was a record regular season crowd for Group 11, taking $11,180 at the gate, the lanky winger helped lift the Spacies from a 22-16 deficit by putting on three of his side's final four-pointers.

The pick of the bunch was an incredible aerial effort in the 64th minute, leaping high for a Chad Porter bomb and then batting back the kick to a flying Brandon Paige, who picked up his double with that telling try.

Porter's conversion missed and Forbes still held a slender 22-20 lead but the Spacies - wearing Captain American jerseys - looked super human from that point on, racing in tries to Benjamin John - his second of the game - Jordan Pope and Brandon Tago to cap a tremendous second half from the Parkes outfit.

"Smedey's growing every week," Paige said before running through his try from the Smede bat-back.

"We train for it every training run ... Smedey gets up early."

The Paige-Smede combination is a growing one for the Spacemen and the young flier enjoyed the derby win over Forbes:

"This is probably my best game," Smede smiled.

Forbes left Pioneer Oval battered and bruised, five-eighth Mitch Burke suffered a spiral fracture in his leg while lock Jake Hadrill again battled a dislocated shoulder.

Hadrill suffered the same injury in round one against Nyngan while Burke's fractured leg will rule him out for Group 11's clash with Group 10 at Forbes on Saturday and further dents the Magpies' play-making stocks, with halfback Jordan Hartwig suffering the same injury against Wellington the week before.

Smedey was unreal, he's only new to the game and he's still learning but he's killing it at the moment.

Parkes skipper Chad Porter.

Burke left the field early in the contest and soon after the Spacemen kicked into gear.

They skipped to a 10-0 lead via tries to Paige and John and probably should have landed more first-half blows following the sin binning of Magpies back-rower Tongia Fox, but the loss of a player spurred the premiers.

They raced in tries to Ben Maguire, Jack Hartwig and then Jaiden Burke to skip to a 14-10 lead at the break and then eight minutes into the second half bumped their advantage out to eight points following an Ethan Gaffney four-pointer.

The southern rivals traded tries through Jay Slavin and then again through Jaiden Burke's second and Forbes' lead was 22-16 with 22 minute to play.

Smede then left his mark on the game.

He batted back a Porter bomb for Paige to score Parkes fourth try of the round seven clash before the flood gates opened.

Smede found space to put Pope over soon after and then again broke through into the back field late to race the Spacies up field, Tago barging his way over on the next play to cap an incredible end to the game.

"Paigey, you give him the ball and you never know what might happen," Parkes skipper Chad Porter said.

"And Smedey was unreal, he's only new to the game and he's still learning but he's killing it at the moment. It's always bloody good to get one over Forbes."

A dejected Cameron Greenhalgh was left to rue another missed opportunity for the premiers, Sunday's loss the third time this season the black and whites have led another top five side only to fold at the death and lose the points.

"Parkes stayed in the fight and took their chances and we just missed some easy tackles at times, which is just not us," the Forbes mentor said.

"At the start of the year we talked about not dropping these types of games so it wasn't as hard for us at the end of the year, but it looks like we're going to go down that road again, which is disappointing."

  • PARKES SPACEMEN 36 (Brandon Paige 2, Benjamin John 2, Jay Slavin, Jordan Pope, Brandon Tago tries; Chad Porter 4 goals) def FORBES MAGPIES 22 (Jaiden Burke 2, Ben Maguire, Ethan Gaffney, Jack Hartwig tries; Bailey Hartwig goal)