Villain to hero as YMP snatch glory

Victory even sweeter with news that Ngatapa had ended Waikohu’s unbeaten run.

Victory even sweeter with news that Ngatapa had ended Waikohu’s unbeaten run.

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN: YMP flanker Fawn White takes on OBM lock Jacob Cook (right) as blindside flanker Fletcher Scammell prepares to tackle White. Pictures by Paul Rickard
Scotty Leighton runs out for his 100th game for High School Old Boys, against Athletic at Rugby Park. Leighton was to have celebrated the occasion last week but a foot injury ruled him out of the YMP game. White and Leighton were on winning teams at the weekend. YMP beat OBM 25-22 and HSOB defeated Athletic 36-12.

YMP fullback Brian Whaitiri-White celebrated his return from suspension with the match-winning try on fulltime in a premier club rugby clash with OBM at the Oval on Saturday.

Enterprise Cars OBM led 22-18 with three minutes remaining and had two great chances to seal a crucial win in the race for a place in the playoffs.

The first was a penalty kick which first five-eighth Jake Holmes dragged wide of the posts.

The second was a potential try also involving Holmes, who regathered the ball from the restart and made a strong run from 30 metres out and 10m in from the left-wing touchline.

Holmes passed to halfback and skipper Willy Grogan, who drew the last defender then passed infield to Holmes.

But as he dived forward and caught the ball, Holmes was hit in a tackle and the ball was lost forward.

With time running out, YMP threw caution to the wind and launched a counterattack, which took them to within 10 metres of the OBM posts.

At first it looked as though OBM had held YMP up and forced a turnover, only for the referee Nico Putter (Hawke’s Bay) to award the Magpies a penalty.

Whaitiri-White tapped and charged across the line to the relief of his teammates.

First-five-eighth Willie Brown added the conversion for a 25-22 win.

Despite the loss, which leaves OBM behind the eight ball but not completely out of the playoffs hunt, coach Brent Mokomoko was a much happier man than he was after the previous weekend’s 36-22 capitulation to Pirates.

‘”Same players, different performance,” said Mokomoko. “It would have been nice to win but I’m happy with the effort. A bit of luck and we could have won. It was a huge improvement and we were right in it until the final play.”

YMP coach Steve Smith was also in a much better mood in comparison to how he felt after his side’s 37-18 loss to HSOB last week.

“It was a good one to win, given the closeness of the race for the top four,” Smith said. “And, of course, the fact the boys kept playing to the end and never gave up is a huge bonus for us.”

YMP left winger Tee Paenga posted the first points with a try from a perfectly-weighted pass from captain and centre Reihana Wyllie in the 13th minute.

OBM replied seven minutes later with a try to lock Mike Derbyshire, who, along with Jacob Cook (lock) and Fletcher Scammell (blindside), led from the front.

Grogan started the move then Holmes delivered the ball on a plate to Derbyshire, and Holmes converted.

OBM stretched the gap with a try to hard-working tighthead prop Jamie Barnett in the 23rd minute.

By then they had the bit between their teeth, with forwards and backs combining to put YMP under pressure.

Holmes extended the lead with a penalty, only for YMP to close the deficit with a try to second five Tyronne White, and the sides headed to the middle with OBM leading 15-12.

OBM had the better of the first 40 but YMP took control of the early stages of the second half.

Brown turned OBM around with some big kicks into the corners and the YMP forwards rose to the occasion.

A Brown penalty edged YMP in front but just as they were beginning to look as though they would add to the score, OBM hit back with a try to Grogan after good work from his brother James on his return from a knee injury.

“It was an awesome effort from the boys to come back to win this one,” said Smith, who singled out White as his player of the day, followed by halfback Jeremy Ferris and blindside flanker Shacor Healey.

Mokomoko was full of praise for his back three — wingers Dean Pohatu and Blake Brown and fullback Reefthan Terekia-Brown — who all took some big hits from the opposition but never flinched when the time to make tackles came again.

Scotty McKinley, playing in the unaccustomed position of centre, added steel to the midfield.

YMP 25 (T Paenga, T White, B Whaitiri-White tries; W Brown 2 con, 2 pen).

OBM 22 (M Derbyshire, J Barnett, W Grogan tries; J Holmes 2 con, pen).

HT: 15-12 (OBM).

YMP fullback Brian Whaitiri-White celebrated his return from suspension with the match-winning try on fulltime in a premier club rugby clash with OBM at the Oval on Saturday.

Enterprise Cars OBM led 22-18 with three minutes remaining and had two great chances to seal a crucial win in the race for a place in the playoffs.

The first was a penalty kick which first five-eighth Jake Holmes dragged wide of the posts.

The second was a potential try also involving Holmes, who regathered the ball from the restart and made a strong run from 30 metres out and 10m in from the left-wing touchline.

Holmes passed to halfback and skipper Willy Grogan, who drew the last defender then passed infield to Holmes.

But as he dived forward and caught the ball, Holmes was hit in a tackle and the ball was lost forward.

With time running out, YMP threw caution to the wind and launched a counterattack, which took them to within 10 metres of the OBM posts.

At first it looked as though OBM had held YMP up and forced a turnover, only for the referee Nico Putter (Hawke’s Bay) to award the Magpies a penalty.

Whaitiri-White tapped and charged across the line to the relief of his teammates.

First-five-eighth Willie Brown added the conversion for a 25-22 win.

Despite the loss, which leaves OBM behind the eight ball but not completely out of the playoffs hunt, coach Brent Mokomoko was a much happier man than he was after the previous weekend’s 36-22 capitulation to Pirates.

‘”Same players, different performance,” said Mokomoko. “It would have been nice to win but I’m happy with the effort. A bit of luck and we could have won. It was a huge improvement and we were right in it until the final play.”

YMP coach Steve Smith was also in a much better mood in comparison to how he felt after his side’s 37-18 loss to HSOB last week.

“It was a good one to win, given the closeness of the race for the top four,” Smith said. “And, of course, the fact the boys kept playing to the end and never gave up is a huge bonus for us.”

YMP left winger Tee Paenga posted the first points with a try from a perfectly-weighted pass from captain and centre Reihana Wyllie in the 13th minute.

OBM replied seven minutes later with a try to lock Mike Derbyshire, who, along with Jacob Cook (lock) and Fletcher Scammell (blindside), led from the front.

Grogan started the move then Holmes delivered the ball on a plate to Derbyshire, and Holmes converted.

OBM stretched the gap with a try to hard-working tighthead prop Jamie Barnett in the 23rd minute.

By then they had the bit between their teeth, with forwards and backs combining to put YMP under pressure.

Holmes extended the lead with a penalty, only for YMP to close the deficit with a try to second five Tyronne White, and the sides headed to the middle with OBM leading 15-12.

OBM had the better of the first 40 but YMP took control of the early stages of the second half.

Brown turned OBM around with some big kicks into the corners and the YMP forwards rose to the occasion.

A Brown penalty edged YMP in front but just as they were beginning to look as though they would add to the score, OBM hit back with a try to Grogan after good work from his brother James on his return from a knee injury.

“It was an awesome effort from the boys to come back to win this one,” said Smith, who singled out White as his player of the day, followed by halfback Jeremy Ferris and blindside flanker Shacor Healey.

Mokomoko was full of praise for his back three — wingers Dean Pohatu and Blake Brown and fullback Reefthan Terekia-Brown — who all took some big hits from the opposition but never flinched when the time to make tackles came again.

Scotty McKinley, playing in the unaccustomed position of centre, added steel to the midfield.

YMP 25 (T Paenga, T White, B Whaitiri-White tries; W Brown 2 con, 2 pen).

OBM 22 (M Derbyshire, J Barnett, W Grogan tries; J Holmes 2 con, pen).

HT: 15-12 (OBM).

Leighton clocks up his 100t

Scotty Leighton finally got to celebrate his 100th game for Earthworks Solutions HSOB when he started against Tyre General Athletic at Rugby Park on Saturday.

Leighton’s teammates made sure it was a happy occasion with a 36-12 premier club rugby win — a victory that was even sweeter with the news that Ngatapa had ended Waikohu’s unbeaten run.

HSOB closed the gap on Waikohu to nine points with two games remaining including a blockbuster against Waikohu in town in two weeks.

The win was also memorable for another HSOB centurion — play-anywhere man Kolo Fonohema — who played in the front row and scored two tries.

“With Jody Tuhaka (loosehead prop) unavailable we’re lucky to have a player like Kolo to step in,” said co-coach Jamie Hutana, who was not happy with HSOB’s performance.

“We won which was our goal, not the best performance but it’s 5 points,” he said.

“Athletic never gave in and scored a couple tries at the end of the game which, like last week, was disappointing and shows a lack of finish from the team.

No.8 Vili Kavai continued his outstanding form with two tries but the three points for player of the day went to Fonohema, with Kavai getting two and Leighton one.

Others to play well were forwards Stefan Destounis, Tamanui Hill, Matekairoa McGuire and Les Hills, while fullback Korey Love timed his runs into the backline to cause Athletic problems.

“Athletic got stuck into us at ruck time which caused a few issues, getting some continuity,” Hutana said. “Our lineouts also had a bit of pressure put on them.”

Athletic’s best on the day was openside flanker Trevor Tahuri, who scored a try.

HSOB 36 (K Fonohema 2, V Kavai 2, J Warren, S Destounis tries; Leighton 3 con).

Athletic 12 (T Tahuri, B White tries; S Bishop con).

HT: 24-0.

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