Baumann cements place in Bay's A-grade squad

Rugby league - Seagulls v Wests Panthers. Seagulls Travin Baumann taken in a tackle.
Rugby league - Seagulls v Wests Panthers. Seagulls Travin Baumann taken in a tackle. Alistair Brightman

IT MAY have been Travin Baumann's best night in the red and green.

The young gun, who has spent much of the season in the under-18s, proved he belonged in Hervey Bay Seagulls' A-grade squad.

The five-eighth scored three first half tries, played a hand in several others, and looked a natural fit alongside captain and halfback Clinton Horne during the 58-4 win against Wests Panthers.

Baumann's performance was that good coach Jai Ingram said he has secured place in the A-grade team for the rest of the year.

"He had a blinder,” Ingram said. "He scored three, and probably could've kept going. He's cemented himself as an A-grader.”

Ingram took notice of Baumann during last week's Toyota Challenge loss to Past Brothers.

"As a coach, I didn't really know too much about him. He made stuff happen last week, but the difference (on Saturday) was he had players around him who all did their jobs,” Ingram said.

Ingram said Ashley O'Donnell, who was unavailable on Saturday, would remain as the first-choice five-eighth, but Baumann could be a mainstay in his 17-man squad should the teenager choose to continue playing in the top grade.

"You get leadership with Ash, and that's from the love he has for the game and his mates,” Ingram said. "I really think he could be a future captain of the club.

"If he's ready to play he'll slip back into the six. That said, I wouldn't hesitate putting Travin into the six if Ash is out. He will probably be our 14 (bench utility) or the rest of the season.”

The big win meant more than just two points to the club, as the Seagulls retain the Dale Hopgood Memorial Shield. Hervey Bay was also presented with the George Baumann Shield, which it retained against Wallaroos two weeks ago.

Ingram thanked Anita Hopgood for her efforts in presented the players' jerseys before the game and the shield after full-time, on what was also used as the club's Sponsor's Day.

"It was our best home game of the year,” he said.

Ingram also thanked the club's sponsors.

Hervey Bay travel to Salter Oval on Sunday to face Easts Magpies, who beat Isis Devils 66-6.

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