(Hurricanes) Hastings BHS: 29 v (Blues) Saint Kentigern College 10
Hastings Boys' High School will seek to win their first National Top Four title on Sunday after reaching their second consecutive final at the expense of Saint Kentigern College.
Hastings used the breeze to great effect in the first-half to attain 68 percent of territory and build a 19-3 halftime lead.
Hastings abandoned their previous policy of not taking penalty kicks to convert four goals from eight St Kent's infractions in the first spell.
Fullback Danny Toala was twice on range from over 30-metres and accurate from closer to the posts too.
Prior to today Hastings had only kicked one penalty goal all season.
St Kent's lineout was shaky throughout and their scrum often in retreat. Hastings first try was scored by openside Jeriah Mua after a 15-metre lineout maul.
A penalty from St. Kent's first-five Rivez Reihana was the Auckland champions only points in the first-half.
Wing Peni Lasaqa bombed a certain try when he failed to pass with two unmarked men on his outside close to the goal line.
St Kent’s hammered away without profit in the opening stanza of the second period. The Hastings defense was abrasive and quick to make the most of turnovers.
Toala snaffled a fumble from near his posts and dashed 60-metres, before kicking ahead for No.8 Devon Flanders who was beaten to the ball by St Kent’s openside Mitchell Gibson.
Toala wouldn’t be denied a second time. Centre Dennon Robinson made a 50-metre outside break and put the fullback into the clear with a simple draw and pass.
Ahead 24-3, Hastings applied the icing when a high kick was allowed to bounce by St Kent’s and Mua collected the scraps and outpaced the defence.
Reihana scored a consolation try and converted impressively from the sideline for St Kent’s whose best was flanker Josh Retter who was tough over the ball and won at least three clean turnovers. Gibson wasn’t as potent at the ruck, but toiled gamley.
Mua continued his top form for Hastings. First-five Lincoln McClutchie played with his typical authority, lock Tane Hohipa was disruptive in the lineouts and prop Josiah Metcalfe-Tavita enhanced his growing reputation.
Of concern for Hastings is the fact halfback Folau Fakatava hobbled off injured in the first-half as he did in last year’s tourney.
(Chiefs) Hamilton Boys’ High School: 49 v (South Island) Southland Boys’ High School:
Hamilton Boys’ High School will contest their sixth National Top Four final after trouncing Southland by a record score.
Last year Southland was beaten 41-0 by eventual champions Mount Albert Grammar School. Unfortunately today was even worse!
Southland started brightly enough winning a wealth of possession and making the occasional break. However handling inaccuracy would be brutally punished by a much larger and more dynamic opponent.
With the wind, Hamilton led 19-0 at halftime crossing for three tries and being denied a fourth when a knock on was detected by the television match official prior to a 60-metre bust by Hamilton second-half Quinn Tupaea, who worryingly hobbled off the field with a shoulder injury.
Southland conceded early in the second-half and the floodgates opened. Hamilton maintained their momentum, despite emptying the bench.
Hamilton right wing Emoni Narawa scored three tries supporting breaks and illustrating power when required.
Openside Jake Russ was more like ’Jake the Mus’ when bullying his way through for the first try. No.8 Tevita Fa’ukafa was even more brutal in the second-half beating six defenders on his way to the line.
First-five Coby Miln, fullback Caleb Muntz, wing Josh Calvert and reserve outside back Fletcher Morgan also profited in the rout.
Hamilton centre Tauterangimarie Kapea and flanker Charles Alaimalo don’t feature on the scoresheet, but were unstoppable at times and instrumental in the creation of several five-pointers.
Southland tried gamely, but the gulf in standard between North Island and South Island secondary school rugby is alarming. Only twice since 2007 has a South Island school made the final.
(Hurricanes) Feilding High School: 44 v (Blues) Rangitoto College: 3
Feilding High School will defend their title after trouncing Rangitoto College, 44-3.
Feilding in their eighth appearance at the co-ed since the inception in 2007 will seek a record fourth title.
Feilding scored eight unanswered tries with Griffin Culver (2), Mark Coogan, Layton Manuel, Josiah Maraku, Frank Prodger, Javiah Wharerau and Drew Wild crossing the chalk. Wild added two conversions.
Feilding was more polished than their lacklustre win in the Hurricanes Regional final against Wellington’s, Porirua College last Saturday. Unlike Aorere last week, Feilding didn’t concede four yellow cards!
(Chiefs) St Peter’s School: 48 v (South Island) St Andrew’s College (15)
It was the Cam Roigard and Bodie Mechell show in the first half of the second Co-ed Cup semi-final between St Peter’s School (Chiefs) and St Andrew’s College (South Island).
Halfback Roigard scored a sizzling four first half tries and right wing Mechell ran in two as St Peter’s school sailed to a match-deciding 41-0 lead by halftime.
Roigard was then subbed early in the second half, before St Peter’s scored their seventh try to take a 48-0 lead. St Andrew’s ran in three quickfire consolation tries at the end.
Playing with the strong wind, St Peter’s opened their scoring off a lineout drive. The halfback-right wing combination then crossed for five tries – the best an 80 metre intercept to Roigard that put the game beyond doubt.
The St Peter’s forwards were also strong in this match, laying a sound platform, while St Andrew’s didn’t get going until it was far too late, making too many mistakes and conceding soft turnovers. The bagpipes had largely fell silent by halftime.
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