Tough away losses for first and second teams

It’s called the Super 8 for good reason.

Both the Gisborne Boys’ High School first and second 15s suffered tough away losses to Napier Boys’ High School at the weekend.

Napier first 15 retained the Football Challenge Cup — first presented in 1915 — beating the Gisborne team 47-20.

In the second-15 match, Gisborne were unable to hang on to a 12-8 halftime lead and lost 21-17.

Gisborne Boys’ High first 15 captain Dylan Hall scored a try in each half and rallied his troops — down 26-10 at the break — when a lesser side would have fallen away.

Gisborne first five-eighth Quinn Collard’s 40-metre penalty goal into the wind at the quarter-hour mark made it 12-3 to Napier, their captain and hooker Tyrone Thompson and right wing Max Anderson having already scored.

A penalty try and halfback Angus Kilmister’s try plus the conversion made it 26-3, before Hall scored and Collard converted with 10 minutes remaining in the first half.

Napier left wing Jayden Stok scored eight minutes after the resumption, which with the third of first-five Henry Williams’s five conversions made the score 33-10.

Napier’s sixth try went to No.8 Luke Russell, before Hall and GBHS left wing TK Reihana scored to make it 40-20 to Napier.

The last tryscorer was Napier tighthead prop Patrick Teddy.

“Napier had good structure, they had big ball-runners and they were quick,” openside flanker Hall said.

“Our boys showed fight in the second half. We’re disappointed but we’ll bounce back — we’ve got seven days before we go to Rotorua.”

Neither Napier coach Brendon Ratcliffe nor Gisborne Boys’ High’s Mark Jefferson gush, but both acknowledged superb performances — Ratcliffe in relation to his team’s dream start, Jefferson in relation to an outstanding individual effort.

“Those first 15 to 20 minutes — that was our best rugby of the season,” Ratcliffe said.

Jefferson said: “Quintony Ngatai at halfback chased, harassed, cover-tackled, passed the ball well and kicked well. He played his best game so far this season.”

Seasoned observers were struck by the lightning start to the game — but also by the gutsy showing of GBHS forwards Amanaki Tonga (tighthead prop) and lock Ofa Tauatavalu (lock), among others.

“Napier controlled the tempo and were very skilful,” former first-class referee Marty Hantz said.

“That said, Gisborne did settle and their second try was a coach’s dream — every pass was fingertip perfect in a sweeping movement. Both teams played really good football. The word from the old boys I spoke to afterwards was that they loved the passion from both teams.”

Napier have held the Football Challenge Cup since their 22-21 win in 2016.

The Gisborne second 15 lost 21-17 but captain and No.8 Blake Beard had no complaints.

“It was a stop-start game but our forwards played strongly,” he said.

“Our first try, we’d taken the ball up, pick-and-go, 20 metres towards their line. We got close like that with our other two tries as well.”

Napier right wing Kenneth Pereka scored the first try but GBHS lock Kauri Waitoa responded in kind. Fullback De-Villa Pirihi-Coutts’s conversion gave Gisborne a 7-5 lead.

Napier first-five Leighton Shaw then kicked the first of his three penalty goals, but Gisborne hooker Seth Lundon scored on the stroke of halftime.

Following the break, Napier went 14-12 up on two Shaw penalties before GBHS tighthead prop Sione Mafileo scored the first try of the second half to give his side a 17-14 lead.

Napier blindside flanker Chaz Heke then scored the match-winning try. Shaw converted for 21-17.

The GBHS first 15, second 15, under-15s and u14s will make the trip to Rotorua Boys’ High School for Round 3 of the Super 8 this weekend before playing their first Super 8 games at the Rectory — against 2017 New Zealand and Super 8 co-champions Hastings Boys’ High School — on June 23.

It’s called the Super 8 for good reason.

Both the Gisborne Boys’ High School first and second 15s suffered tough away losses to Napier Boys’ High School at the weekend.

Napier first 15 retained the Football Challenge Cup — first presented in 1915 — beating the Gisborne team 47-20.

In the second-15 match, Gisborne were unable to hang on to a 12-8 halftime lead and lost 21-17.

Gisborne Boys’ High first 15 captain Dylan Hall scored a try in each half and rallied his troops — down 26-10 at the break — when a lesser side would have fallen away.

Gisborne first five-eighth Quinn Collard’s 40-metre penalty goal into the wind at the quarter-hour mark made it 12-3 to Napier, their captain and hooker Tyrone Thompson and right wing Max Anderson having already scored.

A penalty try and halfback Angus Kilmister’s try plus the conversion made it 26-3, before Hall scored and Collard converted with 10 minutes remaining in the first half.

Napier left wing Jayden Stok scored eight minutes after the resumption, which with the third of first-five Henry Williams’s five conversions made the score 33-10.

Napier’s sixth try went to No.8 Luke Russell, before Hall and GBHS left wing TK Reihana scored to make it 40-20 to Napier.

The last tryscorer was Napier tighthead prop Patrick Teddy.

“Napier had good structure, they had big ball-runners and they were quick,” openside flanker Hall said.

“Our boys showed fight in the second half. We’re disappointed but we’ll bounce back — we’ve got seven days before we go to Rotorua.”

Neither Napier coach Brendon Ratcliffe nor Gisborne Boys’ High’s Mark Jefferson gush, but both acknowledged superb performances — Ratcliffe in relation to his team’s dream start, Jefferson in relation to an outstanding individual effort.

“Those first 15 to 20 minutes — that was our best rugby of the season,” Ratcliffe said.

Jefferson said: “Quintony Ngatai at halfback chased, harassed, cover-tackled, passed the ball well and kicked well. He played his best game so far this season.”

Seasoned observers were struck by the lightning start to the game — but also by the gutsy showing of GBHS forwards Amanaki Tonga (tighthead prop) and lock Ofa Tauatavalu (lock), among others.

“Napier controlled the tempo and were very skilful,” former first-class referee Marty Hantz said.

“That said, Gisborne did settle and their second try was a coach’s dream — every pass was fingertip perfect in a sweeping movement. Both teams played really good football. The word from the old boys I spoke to afterwards was that they loved the passion from both teams.”

Napier have held the Football Challenge Cup since their 22-21 win in 2016.

The Gisborne second 15 lost 21-17 but captain and No.8 Blake Beard had no complaints.

“It was a stop-start game but our forwards played strongly,” he said.

“Our first try, we’d taken the ball up, pick-and-go, 20 metres towards their line. We got close like that with our other two tries as well.”

Napier right wing Kenneth Pereka scored the first try but GBHS lock Kauri Waitoa responded in kind. Fullback De-Villa Pirihi-Coutts’s conversion gave Gisborne a 7-5 lead.

Napier first-five Leighton Shaw then kicked the first of his three penalty goals, but Gisborne hooker Seth Lundon scored on the stroke of halftime.

Following the break, Napier went 14-12 up on two Shaw penalties before GBHS tighthead prop Sione Mafileo scored the first try of the second half to give his side a 17-14 lead.

Napier blindside flanker Chaz Heke then scored the match-winning try. Shaw converted for 21-17.

The GBHS first 15, second 15, under-15s and u14s will make the trip to Rotorua Boys’ High School for Round 3 of the Super 8 this weekend before playing their first Super 8 games at the Rectory — against 2017 New Zealand and Super 8 co-champions Hastings Boys’ High School — on June 23.

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