NUMBER NINE: Sawtell Panthers hooker Tyke Kemp in action on Sunday.
NUMBER NINE: Sawtell Panthers hooker Tyke Kemp in action on Sunday. Sam Flanagan

TOUCH AND GO: Ref does as a runner mid match in Panthers win

RUGBY LEAGUE: The Sawtell Panthers claimed their third victory of the season in a high-scoring affair against the Woolgoolga Seahorses on Sunday.

Both sides weren't afraid to throw the ball around in front of a healthy crowd at Rex Hardaker Oval, with the Panthers managing to get the better of their opposition in the 38-28 win.

Panthers co-coach Tyran Stevenson said it was good to grab another two competition points but they made it hard on themselves.

"We know we can score points, but a lot of Group 2 footy is just whether you can defend or not,” Stevenson said.

"We leaked to many points so there's still plenty to work on but we'll get there in the end.”

The win was Sawtell's second on the trot, but Stevenson said they aren't getting ahead of themselves as their performance had slipped after a stellar showing in Grafton the week before.

The coach said the side showed greater toughness and grit against the high-flying Ghosts.

Stevenson, who is also a crucial member of the Panthers spine, is yet to hit the field in 2019 as an ankle injury is keeping him on the shelf.

He's hoping to return this weekend against the Macksville Sea Eagles.

"It's frustrating sitting on the sideline and I'm looking forward to being back,” he said.

Sunday's game wasn't without drama though, as a touch judge walked off on the job with 10 minutes remaining in the second half.

The touchy left the field and walked through the crowd as the game was halted for an injury. He never returned to his post. There was suggestions at the ground he had left because he was making calls to the referee which weren't being acted upon.

A referee from the crowd had to be called upon to finish the game on the sideline after a five minute delay. A spokesperson for Group 2 said on Tuesday the touch judge had to leave to go to work.