Schools vie for shield

The finalists are decided in the first division of the Waikato secondary schools rugby competition.

Cambridge High School and St John's College will battle it out in the final for the Ian Foster Shield this weekend.

Cambridge secured their spot in the final with a tough 29-12 victory over Morrinsville College, while in the other semifinal matchup, St John's beat out St Peter's School in a thrilling 32-27 win.

In a battle to avoid the wooden spoon, Matamata College managed to put on a strong second-half performance to defeat Tokoroa High School 31-21.

St Peter's flew out to a 10-0 lead in the opening stages of the semifinal, a close match between two evenly matched teams.

However, it was St John's who finished the half stronger, applying pressure on the host's try line and eventually busting through with a pick-and-go try to Sam Walters.

Fullback Keagen Faria followed up with a try of his own completing a strong backline move. Halfback Dylan Bower was outstanding all game particularly with the boot, converting both tries and kicking a penalty to give St John's the lead 17-10 at halftime.

Early pressure in the second half led to a charge-down try to Lui Finau.

From there, the two sides were locked in a fierce battle as St Peter's looked to gain an upper hand in both possession and territory.

It was not enough for St Peter's and when a brilliant St John's backline move was capped off by Matthew Blackie, it sealed the win for the visitors.

It was a similar story as Matamata took on Tokoroa, with the scores locked at 14-all at halftime.

Matamata were able to score through Blair Rodgers who was on hand to finish off after Todd Pollard intercepted a pass on his own goal line.

The home side added a further three tries in the second half through Pollard, Louie Kranenburg and Rory Brady.

Waikato Times