LEETON capped a dominant season in fine style with a 33-12 grand final win over Albury at Connolly Oval on Saturday.
The Phantoms were huge favourites after going unbeaten this year, but were made to work hard for everything against a plucky Steamers outfit.
Leeton looked jittery early and committed a number of errors, with Albury capitalising to score the first try through fullback Moses Baleidrokadroka after seven minutes.
But the Phantoms composed themselves and with their big size advantage in the pack starting to be a factor, scored the next three tries through Eroni Naua, Sounivalati Raturadra and Vereti Tupou to take a 21-5 lead early in the second half.
A try off a regathered chip kick to Albury inside centre George Woods got them back into the game at 21-12 with 20 minutes left, but Raturadra's second and another after the bell to Agustin De Notta sealed the premiership for Leeton.
Raturadra was awarded the Warwick Tout medal as the player of the match.
Phantoms captain Paul Ta'avao was relieved to finish off an unbeaten season with the title.
"It was a tough game but we managed to do it well," he said.
"They forced us into errors early but we managed to calm ourselves down.
"Especially in the wet weather we had to stay patient (and let our forwards take control), which we did."
Both teams didn't field first grade teams this year, but Ta'avao said the club is hopeful of returning to the top flight in 2021.
Albury captain Sam Seton was proud of his team's application, but said Leeton's size eventually told.
"Anyone's going to get tired going up against those big bodies, it's how it is."
LEETON 33 (Sounivalati Raturadra 2, Vereti Tupou, Agustin De Notta, Eroni Naua tries; Tupou 3, Wah Paw conv) def ALBURY 12 (Moses Baleidrokadroka, George Woods tries; Woods conv)