PETONE 18 ORIENTAL-RONGOTAI 33
PETONE 18 (Jared Kahu, Nick Grigg tries, Carne Green 1 con, 2 pen) ORIENTAL ROGOTAI 33 (Ardie Savea 2, Andrew Ellis, Matt Proctor, Paulo Akuso tries, James Proctor 4 con). HT 19-6 Ories. Sin Bin: Tyral Vigne (Petone) Peta Fa'atau (Ories).
Best and fairest: 3 points: Matt Proctor (Ories fullback), 2 points: Jared Kahu (Petone halfback), 1 point: Ardie Savea (Ories No8).
Venue: Petone Rec.
What happened: The constructive genius of Matt Proctor and the individual brilliance of Ardie Savea combined to propel Oriental Rongotai into next week's semi finals.
Needing to win with a four-try bonus point to qualify for the semi finals, Ories left nothing to chance and had three of them before halftime and the fourth straight after the restart.
Matt Proctor played a part in all three Ories tries in the first half, setting up two and scoring a 75 meter individual try.
Ardie Savea scored a outstanding individual try straight after the break then Paulo Akuso was on hand to score the visitors last try after Ambrose Curtis combined with Savea down the left flank.
The home side were missing several front line players but were competitive for the whole match and finished with two tries, one by Nick Grigg a carbon copy of Proctors first half effort.
Who stood out: Matt Proctor was all class for Ories, Paulo Akuso gave him good support, as did brother James Proctor. In the forwards Ardie Savea seemed to relish playing at this level while Lucky Tuiatua was very productive.
Petone also had some stand outs with Jared Kahu and Aleks Noble-Campbell always dangerous in the Petone backs while Josh Hrstich, Eugene Smith and Tyral Vigne left nothing on the park for the home side.
The up-shot: Ories now move on to face HOBM in next week semi final with a fair amount of confidence. Petone go away to prepare for next season with the knowledge they have a lot of young talent that will have learnt a lot from this season. Next up: Ories v HOBM Hutt Rec.
- Doug Smith
WAINUIOMATA 13 HOBM 12
Wainuiomata 13 (John Monu try. Tyler Tane 1con, 2pens) HOBM 12 (Penalty Try, Glen Walters. Glen Walters 1con)
HT: 13-0 Wainuiomata.
Best and fairest: 3 points: Josh Robertson-Weepu (Woa Fullback), 2 points: Ben Tupuola (Woa 8), 1 point: Nick Risdon (HOBM Halfback).
Venue: William Jones Park, Wainuiomata
What happened: The old adages "Defence wins games" and "A game of two halves" sums up the outstanding match witnessed here.
Wainuiomata dominated the first half in attack but HOBM efforts in defence were outstanding. HOBM were only able to venture beyond Wainui's 22 once following a big play by halfback Nick Risdon against his opposite Uale Mai. Wainuiomata outside backs Josh Robertson-Weepu and Tyler Tane made sure that when in possession; they kicked deep into the visitors' half and did so, setting the platform for their first half dominance.
Given the heaviness of William Jones Park you'd expect to see a forward dominated match but to the contrary Wainui threw the ball around like it was preseason, their try coming after a Marvin Karawana midfield break and some well timed passing to put wing Fa'atau Mamea into space, re gathering and popping to First five John Monu to score, their other points from the boot of Tyler Tane.
With All Black Jeremy Thrush in the ranks HOBM came out a different team in attack for the second spell testing Wainuiomata's defensive line. Simon Malaeulu was judged to be held up but HOBM were awarded a penalty try and given the easier conversion attempt and close the deficit to 6.
They followed soon after with a well worked backline play finished by first five Glen Walters who unfortunately missed the conversion leaving them 1 point behind for the final 12 minutes.
Who stood out: Josh Robertson-Weepu kept a clam head with a number of runs but impressed with his positional kicking. Number 8 Ben Tupuola was again the leader of Wainui's go forward. HOBM were all outstanding in defence but the veteran Nick Risdon's energy in attack stood out.
The up-shot: Two Hutt Valley Semi Finals, Wainuiomata hosting Marist St Pats and HOBM facing a possibly Hurricanes-stacked Oriental Rongotai.
- Shane Kempson
MSP 34 OBU 20
Marist St Pats 34 (Isaia Petelo 2, Andrew Wells 2, Cardiff Vaega tries, Fa'atonu Fili 3 Con, Pen) Old Boys University 20 (Adam Hill, Ian Kennedy, Luke Campbell tries, Hamish Buick Con, Pen) HT 10-3.
Best and fairest: 3 points: Matt Peni (MSP No.8), 2 points: Andrew Wells (MSP fullback), Ian Kennedy (OBU flanker).
Venue: Evans Bay Park
What happened: Marist St Pats sealed their Jubilee Cup semifinal spot with a convincing victory over OBU, in the
process keeping their chances alive of a Swindale/Jubilee double. In a virtual quarterfinal, MSP adjusted to the tricky conditions well and had the game won inside the hour.
MSP were quickly into their work, dominating possession and territory; helped by number of OBU errors. They were rewarded when the ever-impressive Isaia Petelo scooted down the left flank to score midway through the half. OBU came into the game late in the half and would have been satisfied to be down by just 10-3 at the break.
MSP came out firing in the second half with fullback Andrew Wells scoring a quick and classy brace before Cardiff Vaega brilliantly evaded tacklers down the touchline to secure the bonus point. OBU threw on their subs and were rewarded with late tries either side of Petelo's second. It was too little too late for OBU however with late attempts at claiming bonus points coming to nothing.
Who stood out: NZ U20 player Matt Peni lived up to the reputation with a storming game, consistently denting the
line. He was ably assisted by the versatile Valentine Meachen. Andrew Wells took his tries well and was solid at the back while Petelo was his usual menacing self. For OBU, the Kennedy brothers, Ian and Ross, were typically industrious and the bench added late impact.
The upshot: MSP showed their often underused running game, and with an experienced pack and dangerous
backs look to be peaking nicely. A disappointing finish to the season for OBU, making too many errors in this game to offer a serious challenge. Next up: Semifinal - MSP vs. Wainuiomata at William Jones Park.
- Warwick Small
UPPER HUTT RAMS 29 TAWA 14
Upper Hutt 29 (Anaru Rangi, Sam Wasley, Jordan Simpson-Hefft 2 tries; Ben Aoina 3 con,1 pen). Tawa 14 ( James Coburn, Ezra Fermanis tries; James So'oialo 2 con). HT: 21-7. Yellow cards: James So'oialo (77th min).
Best and fairest: 3 points: Jordan Simpson-Hefft (UH fullback), 2 points: Anaru Rangi (UH hooker) 1 point: Tolu Fahamokioa (Tawa’s reserve prop).
Venue: Maidstone Park, Upper Hutt.
What happened: Upper Hutt have locked away the Bill Brien Challenge Cup for the season with a final-round win over 2013 champions, Tawa.
It was the away side who started the better off with early momentum suggesting it would be a hard slog for the Rams. However, that early pressure did not result in points and the Rams stormed back into the contest running in three unanswered tries.
After periods of sustained attack, UH had their first through Anaru Rangi, after a strong run from lock Sam Wasley.
Jordan Simspon-Hefft ran in UH's second, set up by openside Josh Hunt who tore his way through Tawa's backline defence which went missing at times. Wasley would get reward for setting up an earlier try with one of his own before the break. Tawa, opportunistically, scored one of their own on halftime through prop James Coburn which gave them a sniff of a comeback.
Tawa midfielder, Ezra Fermanis, crossed over for their second before Ben Aoina nudged the Rams further ahead with a penalty after the break, pushing the margin to ten.
UH would have the last say when Joyner Key made one of many breaks, finding Troy Mohr before linking with Simpson-Hefft to secure the four-try bonus point and cap off an entertaining afternoon for the home side.
Who stood out: Jordan Simpson-Hefft was by far and away the standout performer at Maidstone Park. His touch-finders were accurate, his defence strong and also made a plethora of game-breaking incisions which made all the difference for UH, not to mention his two tries. Anaru Rangi gets through a mountain of work for UH and is explosive on defence, putting his boy on the line on every play. His try was much-deserved and is a standout in the Rams roster. Tolu Fahamokioa was Tawa's super-sub and used his size and power to make plenty of strong runs in the second-half.
The up-shot: Tawa have come back down to earth after comprehensively winning the Jubilee Cup in 2013, finishing 7th on the ladder after a cup campaign they'd like to forget, considering the personnel they boast. Upper Hutt has completed a strong first season after amalgamating over the off-season. Strong showings in both Swindale and Jubilee competitions leave them with a debut season to be proud of, and also one to build on. They sign off with a deserving and comprehensive win which will ease the pain of narrowly missing out on a semi-final spot, they finish 5th on 16 points, one behind Ories.
- Jack Biggs
PONEKE 31 AVALON 13
Poneke 31 (Faresa Tasele, Conor Maddix-Wikaera, Galu Taufale, Pakai Turia tries; Edwin Ainley 1 con 3 pen) Avalon 13 (Jordan Aquila 2 tries; Peni Bulamaibau 1 pen). HT 11-13.
Venue: Kilbirnie Park
Best and fairest: 3 points: Pakai Turia (Poneke 1st five-eighth) 2 points: Reg Goodes (Poneke prop) 1 point: Jesse Oloapu (Avalon 2nd five-eighth).
What happened: Poneke played much better rugby into the wind and that is what got them the victory on Saturday.
Avalon repelled Poneke's early attacks and struck first after a break by impressive midfielder Jesse Oloapu led to fullback Jordan Aquila's first try.
Despite being starved of possession in the first half and having to play into strong winds Avalon defended very well, took their opportunities on attack and led 13-11 at the break.
But what Avalon did well Poneke were able to do better. The home side resorted to running the ball in the second half instead of attempting to kick into the breeze.
This proved a successful approach as the home side piled on 20 unanswered points. Avalon capitulated as the penalty count against them stacked up and they would have been disappointed with their second half effort, especially on defence as Poneke found numerous holes in the visitors' backline.
Who stood out: Young 1st five Pakai Turia was particularly good on attack and sliced straight through the middle of Avalon's defence to score a late try that secured the win. Prop Reg Goodes was impressive at scrum time and on defence. Avalon 2nd five Jesse Oloapu looked threatening all afternoon.
Around the grounds: Now for the Hardham Cup semifinals. Poneke finish second after round robin play and face Wellington next week. The Axemen wrapped up third place after beating Johnsonville 24-13. In the other semifinal Avalon face a big test against a table-topping Norths side. Norths easily beat Paremata-Plimmerton 43-13 to secure first place. In Saturday's other match OBU B edged MSP B 20-15.
- Nick Truebridge
- The Dominion Post
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