Auckland Champions St. Kentigern College and National runners-up Scots College will contest the 27th annual Presbyterian Schools' Quadrangular final after resounding victories in their round robin matches.
St. Kent's scored 34 unanswered points in the second-half to steamroll St. Andrew's while Scots eventually suppressed a tenacious Lindisfarne. The St. Kent's match started at a breakneck speed with five tries scored in the opening twenty minutes.
Right wing Peni Lasaqa opened their account after finishing a break from fullback Etene Nani. St. Andrew's responded instantly when fullback Matthew Taylor scored after a spillage at the kick-off and multiple phases. St. Kent's scored the next two tries.
Vice Captain Tanielu Tele'a strolled over unopposed after a strong five-meter scrum and first-five Rivez Reihana swatted past two defenders and muscled over. St. Kent's wasn't entirely polished in the first 20-minutes. They threw a series of wayward passes that kept St. Andrew's in the contest. First-Five Sam Gilbert pierced the defence and offloaded skilfully to wing Jack Symes who reduced the deficit to 19-12. St. Kent's enjoyed a considerable size advantage.
They looked most dangerous when their athletic back-row carried forcefully to draw in defenders before firing wide. Flankers Te Ahiwaru Crikidaveta and Kayleb Milne had storming games and lock Joel Vaiangina was full of bustle. When St. Kent's reduced their errors the combined power of their forwards eventually told. St. Andrew's was dispatched into perpetual retreat. Carlos Price scored two tries and can easily switch between halfback and first-half.
Fullback Etene Nani sought frequent action and broke the defence often. He scored three tries and generously handed the ball to Price when over the line. Wing Tanielu Tele'a scored a hat-trick as a Year 10 against Auckland Grammar and is a player to keep an eye on in 2016.
Lindisfarne started with fire against Scots College and a break by sprightly wing Monty Grieg was converted into points when Gianni Caton slotted a penalty. Lindisfarne was successful in committing greater numbers to the breakdown and extracting lot of turnovers in the first-half.
Loose forwards Frank Tupuola and Chris Hicks were tireless on defence. Scots had much superior backs. The midfield combo of Malo Manuao and Tai Neli caused constant concern as did fullback Connor Garden-Bachop when he ventured into the line. Ironically the first try for Scots was scored by prop Moala Katoa, but a 35m breakout try by Neli reinforced the quality of the Scots backs. Lindisfarne had plenty of possession in the second-spell and were held up twice over the goal-line. However when Scots built phases, with quick ball, holes soon appeared in the Lindisfarne defence. Lock Tama Kapene and No.8 Jack Loader were rewarded for their graft with tries and Manuao created a spectacular try for Garden-Bachop when he leapt into the air and deflected a high bounce from a chip kick onto the vice-captain.
St. Kentigern College: 65 (Etene Nani 3, Carlos Price 2, Tanielu Tele'a 2, Peni Lasaqa, Rivez Reihana, Ryan Jones, Sam Toloke tries; Price 3 con, Reihana 2 con) St. Andrew's College: 12 (Matthew Taylor, Jack Symes tries; Sam Gilbert 1 con) Scots College: 31 (Moala Katoa, Tai Neli, Tama Kapene, Jack Loader, Connor Garden-Bachop tries; Malo Manuao 3 con) Lindisfarne College: 3 (Gianni Caton 1 pen)
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