Bryce Cartwright's penalty try helps Gold Coast to first NRL win

Gold Coast have found their attacking flourish to open their NRL account in a 30-24 defeat of Penrith.

A 66th minute penalty try to Bryce Cartwright was the difference as both sides traded blows in a free-flowing clash on the Gold Coast.

Points had deserted the Titans in four losses to start the season but they piled them on in Robina to ease the pressure on coach Garth Brennan and restore some faith after a club-worst 0-4 season start.

Twice AJ Brimson was cruelly denied decisive four-pointers in the second half, but the fact they still found a way only made Brennan's smile broader.

"The way we're going at the moment that ball's bouncing the wrong way, but they didn't let that affect them," Brennan said.

"I think this team in the past might've thought 'oh well we've had a crack for 40 minutes and maybe tonight's not our night'.

"But they turned it around. It showed me the desire ... it was good to see."

The win came despite the first-half loss of a hobbled halfback Ashley Taylor, with Brimson slotting in effectively alongside ringleader Tyrone Roberts.

The Titans had scored just eight first-half points all season but led 18-12 at the break on the back of 90 per cent completion and 20 missed Penrith tackles.

Roberts was the architect with his probing runs and deft kicking, while a short Taylor kick set Roberts up for his side's first try.

A blockbusting Viliame Kikau carried four men over to keep the Panthers close before tries to James Fisher-Harris and Josh Mansour - set up by a slick Nathan Cleary offload - put the visitors ahead.

Jarrod Wallace had the Titans' reply and followed it up with a shoulder charge that sparked a heated final 20 minutes.

The hosts eventually found the winner when Bryce Cartwright was impeded by Tyrell Fuimaono as he chased Dale Copley's chip in goal.

The fact Cartwright couldn't ground the ball cleanly meant it was a penalty try, allowing Michael Gordon to slot the points from in front.

Fox Sports statistics had Penrith missing 39 tackles, leaving Panthers coach Ivan Cleary shaking his head.

"Yeah it sure is (concerning)," he said.

"I've got to say that's a bit of a shock; it just shows that we're not consistent enough in that area."

A potentially serious shoulder injury to captain Isaah Yeo only dampened the mood further for the Panthers, who fell to 2-3 with the loss.