Heavyweights primed for battle after big wins

BRENDON EGAN
Last updated 05:00 07/05/2012

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Otago Boys' High School and Southland Boys' High School will head into next week's interschool clash with momentum on their side after both sides recorded wins in the Highlanders First XV rugby competition on Saturday.

Southland Boys' backed up last week's opening-round triumph over John McGlashan College, with a 43-13 win over Menzies College in Wyndham.

Centre Hayden Pope and wing Nathan Frisby both grabbed a brace of tries for Southland Boys', with Metua Aerenga and halfback Liam Howley also getting across the line.

Menzies made a promising start to the game at home and scored the first try. Southland Boys' began to get into their work and took a 29-5 advantage into halftime. Menzies hit back with a try to start the second half, before the visitors wrapped up the bonus point win with two tries of their own.

Openside flanker Tayne Raumati-Mackie had a powerful game for Southland Boys', with Jordan Stewart industrious at No8, and Pope the best of the backs.

Southland Boys' will take on long-time southern schoolboy rivals Otago Boys' in their next game in Dunedin on May 16.

The Invercargill team will need to improve their discipline ahead of that game, after finishing on the wrong side of a 20-5 penalty count against Menzies.

Otago Boys', who are fielding what many have dubbed their strongest first XV in a decade, were too powerful for South Otago High in Dunedin, winning 71-5.

Hooker Junior Pole had a busy afternoon for Otago Boys', dotting down for four tries, with second-five Aleki Morris, bagging a double, and halfback Josh Renton also effective in the win.

South Otago's midfield pairing of Jackson Cook and Reuben McClay batttled hard in the loss, with hooker Josh Turnball also a workhorse for his team.

James Hargest were beaten 49-0 by Waitaki Boys' High in Oamaru, after they held a 24-0 lead at halftime. James Hargest held their own up front, but found it tough to contain Waitaki's slick backline, who asked plenty of questions of their defence.

No8 Anton Huisman and centre Michael Peterson were the most consistent James Hargest performers.

In the earlier game on Thursday, Gore High and Dunstan High played out an entertaining 27-27 draw.

Gore High coach, Wayne Blakeborough, said his team had their opportunity to win the game, but were unable to do so. They were pleased to take three competition points away, after grabbing a bonus point for four tries. Standouts for Gore High included second-five Hayden Stephens and openside flanker Michael Blondell.

In other games on Saturday, St Kevin's College picked up their first win of the season after knocking over Kavanagh College 24-20 in Dunedin. King's High School overpowered James McGlashan 55-7.

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- The Southland Times

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