Above: The Wellington and Manawatu teams after today’s game in Palmerston North.
There will be no capital boys First XV presence at this year’s Top 4 after both Wellington schools fell short in their Hurricanes region semi-finals today.
St Pat’s Silverstream, beaten finalists from last Sunday, missed out 37-10 to Hastings Boys’ High School in Hastings, while last Sunday’s champions Scots College were run down by Palmerston North Boys’ High School in a 22-24 loss at Jerry Collins Stadium.
Silverstream held Hastings to 10-10 at halftime before falling away, while Scots College were undone by a Love-fest, in the form of fullback Ruben and his younger brother Logan.
Scots burst to a 17-0 lead in a matter of minutes, with openside flanker Cody Lokotui, centre Ethan Webster-Nonu and wing Eric Lawson scoring tries.
The first try was a cracker, after backs Sage Shaw-Tait and Roderick Solo busted the line to create a crashover for Lokotui. Lawson used his pace to outstretch the defence in the corner and Webster-Nonu crashed over from close range after another breakout by Lawson from a scrum.
Palmerston North BHS got themselves back into the contest and ended the first half held up over the line. They then started the second half with a try to fullback Rueben Love who stepped his way through traffic from 25 metres to score to make it 17-7.
Replacement halfback Logan Love dummied and darted over the line from close range to close the gap to 17-14. They then brought on firepower from the bench and muscled up and hit the lead at 21-17 up with a try to hooker turned flanker Bryn Gordon.
Scots re-took the lead with a second try to Lawson, on the end of a six-man chain, but Ruben Love won the game with a 35 metre penalty in front of the poles.
Thus it will be a Hastings – Palmerston North BHS Hurricanes final next Saturday.
In the co-ed Cup semi-final, Aotea College beat Kapiti College 29-7 and they will play Feilding High School in their final, while St Mary’s College will take on Manukura who beat Hastings’ Girls’ High School 37-8 during the week.
Aotea College booked a rematch with Feilding HS in next weekend’s Coed schools final, accounting for Kapiti College 29-7. In an at times messy game, Aotea built a 19-0 lead early into the second half, and although Kapiti scored through an excellent backline move that was all they could muster before Aotea pulled clear. Ropati So’oalo was again outstanding and capped his day’s work with the final try, and there were excellent contributions from first-five Mati Matofai and loose forward Sia Ulugia-Mao. Kapiti fullback Louis Northcott was dangerous on attack and solid on defence, and was ably supported by centre Taine Hata.
Aotea and St Mary’s Colleges will be joined in next weekend’s Hurricanes school finals by Hutt International Boys’ School who will play for the inaugural Life Members Cup against Lindisfarne College (Hawkes Bay).
There were two club rugby semi-finals today in the Premier Reserve Division 2 grade.
In these, the Upper Hutt Rams J8s beat the MSP Internationals 49-14 and the Paremata-Plimmerton Punters defeated the Old Boys University Pink Ginners 22-20. Next week’s Alan Seerup Cup final will be between the Upper Hutt Rams and Paremata-Plimmerton sides.
It was a classic semi-final at Ngati Toa Domain as the Paremata-Plimmerton Punters and OBU Pink Ginners traded the lead several times before the Punters prevailed. The Ginners scored right on half-time to take a 15-12 lead, but the Punters scored twice after a lengthy break following a serious looking head knock for their former Cook Islands 7’s rep Adam Vardey. OBU scored late to set up a grandstand finish, but missed both that conversion and an even later penalty shot before spilling the ball in the shadow of the posts to end the game.
On Friday night, the Wellington U19s won the second leg of their Central Region Shield series to qualify for the upcoming Jock Hobbs Memorial tournament in Taupo by beating the Hurricanes Heartland U20s side 82-7.
The U19s led 28-7 at halftime and then strode out for a comfortable victory in the second 35 minutes. They scored 13 tries, with second five-eighth Kienan Higgins and replacement forward Taine Plumtree both scoring hat-tricks and right wing Junior Time-Taotua bagging a brace.
In the other Hurricanes region U19 match today, Manawatu U19 beat Hawke’s Bay U19 15-5.
In representative rugby today at Kilbirnie Park, the Wellington Centurions Development team beat the Wellington Samoans 50-29 in a Festival Cup fixture, while the Centurions U18s defeated the Wellington Samoans U18s 24-17.
In Palmerston North, Wellington Maori beat Manawatu Maori 69-0.
In sunny conditions on a heavy track following recent rain, Wellington Maori scored 11 tries and, with the exception of a brief period midway through the second half, never looked like conceding a try.
Wellington Maori dominated all facets of the game, and were particularly punishing on the turnover with several long-range tries ran in. Manawatu Maori didn’t help their cause by making a lot of unforced errors such as not finding touch from penalties on at least three occasions.
Second five-eighth Jarrod Adams was the first to cross after 10 minutes, accepting an inside pass from flyhalf Glen Walters and halfback Sheridan Rangihuna converted.
An 80 metre breakout involving centre Jayden McCarthy, fullback Pakai Turia and left wing Jordan Glen-Bradbrook led to a kick ahead and try to Rangihuna to double the score.
Two more tries followed, including one to Walters, before another turnover and breakout saw No. 8 Luke Omeri linking with Glen-Bradbrook for their fifth try and a 33-0 halftime lead.
Wellington scored their next two tries in quick succession early in the second half, with loose forwards Jordan Gillies and William Rua dotting down. Right wing Sam Clarke laid on the assist for Rua’s try and then converted to make it 47-0 and a rout was on.
Manawatu Maori re-grouped for a time and, while never seriously threatening, were able to string some phases together and compete for the ball.
With about 15 minutes to play, Wellington Maori counter-attacked and scored the first of two quickfire tries. Flanker Matt Jacobs took a quick tap penalty and waltzed through after a breakout up the left side by replacement wing Adam Clark. From the kick-off, Wellington burst through again and replacement halfback Declan Hay scored in the corner to make it 59-0.
They scored another two tries to end the contest in style, with centre McCarthy and first-five-eighth Walters scoring the last two tries.
The Wellington Maori side after their win over Manawatu Maori.