THE North Tamworth Bears have sent a message to the Group 4 competition in the form of an 84-point victory over Boggabri.
Lead by a hat-trick of tries from Josh Schmiedel, the reigning premiers kept a clean sheet against the undermanned Roos, running out 84-0 winners.
Bears playing coach Scott Blanch said he was pleased with his side's defensive efforts.
"I think we were a bit rusty in our attacking sets,but our back rowers were doing their job and our midfielders were doing their job," Blanch told the Namoi Valley Independent.
"I was probably most pleased with our defensive effort, the Roos put on a bit of pressure on us in the second half.
"Overall, our attitude was just pleasing in defence all day, we worked for each other and that's all we have to do."
Blanch was among the try scorers, collecting two of his own alongside Andrew Moodie, who also bagged two tries.
"Schmiedel and Moods were massive today [Sunday] with five tries between them," Blanch said.
"I'm sure Schmieds enjoyed the space out there, at times we couldn't get the footy off him.
"But, as long as those boys are enjoying themselves in the lineup that's the main thing."
Roos coach Shane Rampling said he was proud of the effort shown by his side.
"It was always going to be tough when you take 10 first grade players out of the side," Rampling said.
"I can't fault the boys attitude, we just didn't have the quality to maintain the pressure we had on them early in the game."
Rampling said his side would have plenty to work on ahead of next week's clash against Kootingal-Moonbi.
"My message to the boys will be pretty much the same as it has been for most of the season so far," he said.
"We will be working on completing our sets and trying to eliminate the silly mistakes.
"If we can do that and get a few more guys to training we will be pretty competitive going forward."
As for the Bears, they will return to Jack Woolaston Oval and play host to the Narrabri Blues.
"There is always stuff for us to work on," Blanch said.
"We will be looking to get better every week and continue to look to do the small things well."