Newcastle have prevailed in an 8-6 struggle over Penrith Panthers in front of 15,536 fans at Hunter Stadium tonight.
In a contest that didn't reach many heights, Newcastle were the first side to hold onto the ball following a sloppy opening to the game. From a scrum, James McManus evaded one tackle and found open air on his way to the try-line.
Neither team were able to hold onto the ball but Newcastle were again on the board when Penrith conceded a penalty for interfering in the ruck. Gidley stepped up and made it 8-0.
Penrith had a few opportunities to cross the stripe following their barren patch with a 32nd minute no try to Tim Grant after a driving effort by his team-mates kept them scoreless for another half.
The drought continued well into the second half with Penrith having chances but no penetration. Finally in the 69th minute, they crossed the stripe.
Luke Walsh put up a towering bomb that was spilled by Darius Boyd right into the waiting hands of Sika Manu who has become a try-scoring regular in a struggling side.
Panthers though, lacking troops and ideas weren't able to get a second score to get a victory and Newcastle continued their unbeaten home start to 2013.
There will be a multitude of injury problems for the Panthers though: Wes Naiqama, Travis Robertson, Josh Mansour and Cameron Ciraldo going off injured.