Lakes halfback Nash Birch stood out as a Newcastle Rebels development squad comfortably accounted for an NRL affiliated states team in Thursday night's end-of-season representative fixture at Maitland Sportsground.
The Rebels, aged 20-to-24 years, defeated the visitors 38-0 with Birch having a hand in all three of the first-half tries.
Birch was involved with an impressive interchange of passes for Newcastle's opener to Tylar Carter in the ninth minute. The No.7 then stepped in midfield and offloaded to centre Ngangarra Barker followed by captain Harry O'Brien for four pointers in almost carbon-copy style six minutes apart.
It was 16-0 at the main break.
Rebels centre Harry Van Dartel converted his own try in the 49th minute. Dom Murphy and Greg Morris also crossed either side of the hour mark. Hooker Nick Lawrence made the score sheet in the 73rd minute.
NRL affiliated states included players from Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and the Northern Territory.
In the earlier women's Blues Tag fixture at the same venue, excellent defence late from the Newcastle Rebels saw the hosts hold on for a 12-8 victory against NSW Country champions the Central Coast.
The Rebels' two converted tries, scored in either half by fullback Amy Waterhouse and utility Jacqui Dudgeon, put them in front on each occasion. Newcastle were down 8-6 at the interval.