Centre Adex Wera scored a hat-trick of tries in an eye-catching performance and helped ensure his side remain unbeaten after two rounds of the Queensland Cup.
Wera’s centre partner Kato Ottio, who later shifted to the backrow, was named the man-of-the-match.
The backs may have had all the glory, scoring all of the home side’s points but that they were put in that position by the pack, who worked hard to match the bigger Dolphins. Wera opened the scoring with a try off a well-executed second man play after 10 minutes.
Halfback Roger Laka missed the conversion and the Hunters led 4-0.
The fast- starting Hunters were in again minutes later when fullback Stargroth Amean dotted down the second four-pointer and this time Laka converted to have Michael Marum’s men to move out to a 10-point lead.
The visitors were not about to let the Hunters get ahead with Martin Cordwell crossing to cut the lead back to four after a successful Luke Capewell conversion.
The Hunters led 10-6 but that lead was erased by Dolphins five-eighth Evander Cummins, who sauntered through for his side’s second try and with Capewell on target, the lead changed hands for the first time in the match with Redcliffe up by two at 12-10.
Spurred on by the home crowd, the Hunters made sure they had the last say in the opening 40.
Thompson Teteh motored in for a 36th minute try in typical fashion with the Eastern Highlander showing a clean pair of heels to out-pace the defence after slicing through a hole.
Laka managed the conversion to regain the lead at 16-12.
Teteh’s effort was matched by Wera, who gave the Hunters more reason to be confident with a try just before halftime. With the score at 20-12 the Hunters were confident victory was within their grasp. An error in the opening minutes of the second half saw the Dolphins reduce the margin to 20-16.
But Wera reacted, weaving his way to the try-line in a 40m solo effort that gave his side some breathing room at 26-16.
The Dolphins hit back with a try to Aaron Whitchurch in the 67th minute to trail by four points, 26-22.
But it was the Hunters that finished with a flurry as Amean bagged his second in the 72nd minute to give his side an eight point buffer at 30-22.