None of the 14 teams in the Premier Jubilee Cup and Premier Reserve Hardham Cup competitions have qualified for the semi-finals, with two two rounds now to play before the knockout rounds commence.
On a day of high scoring, only Poneke in the Jubilee Cup and Johnsonville and Paremata-Plimmerton in the Hardham Cup are officially out of the running, although Petone’s claim for the top four is tenuous at best and Avalon’s is marginally better.
On a dry, blustery afternoon, the scoring was generally high and the tries came in thick and fast throughout several matches in the Wellington club and college rugby competitions on the last day of June.
In the Jubilee Cup, Northern United returned from their bye to beat Hutt Old Boys Marist 22-18 at the Hutt Rec. After earlier spending 10 minutes in the sin-bin, hooker Bruce Kauika-Petersen returned to score the match-winning try in the 76th minute, finishing off a counter-attacking raid from inside his team’s 22.
HOBM left wing Fereti Soloa had danced up the left hand touchline to put HOBM ahead 18-17, after Norths had edged ahead through consecutive tries to lock Olano Afutoto and right wing Connor Garden-Bachop. Norths had led 7-6 at halftime, scoring the game’s first try after 5 minutes. The rest of the first half was an arm-wrestle as Norths defended stoutly into the wind. The Eagles broke open the game with a converted try to midfielder Francis Tunavasa early in the second half with Kauika-Petersen in the bin.
Down the road at the Petone Rec, the home side lost to Oriental-Rongotai 44-29. Petone had first use of the wind, but were rocked early by a Trent Renata interept try and fell behind 0-10. Centre and captain Willie Fine then blasted through for a first half hat-trick, including a 95 metre counterattack and a kick and chase try. Petone led 22-10 at halftime.
Ories scored two tries on the trot, including the first of two tries to N0, 8 William Heather, to go ahead 24-22. Petone moved back in front with a penalty try, before Ories scored again through Heather and and then to replacement wing Steven Va’a who scored a 50 metre runaway to seal the win. Ories won the Jim Brown Memorial Trophy.
At Lyndhurst Park, Tawa beat Poneke 48-24. Tawa scored the game’s first two tries to move ahead of Poneke 12-3, before going ahead 29-3 and pulling clear from that point. Tawa won seven tries to three, with openside flanker Hemi Fermanis scoring a double and five individuals filling the scoresheet.
In the Hardham Cup, Old Boys University beat Johnsonville 88-22. Playing into a cold, strong wind in the first half, the Goats soon wrestled control up front and the tries started to flow. OBU Went on to win 14 tries to 4, with fullback Sam Reid and left wing Trevahn Ta’ufo’ou each scoring a hat-trick and flanker Shamus Langton and centre Ty Poe each scoring braces.
Marist St Pat’s beat the Wellington Axemen 43-5 at Evans Bay Park. MSP led the Axemen 19-0 and more than doubled their tally after the break. Left wing Faresa Tasale scored two of their seven tries.
The Upper Hutt Rams retained the Harper Vine Trophy with a 61-34 win over the Avalon Wolves. Second five-eighth Jayden Treviranus scored two tries, while flyhalf Tyler Tane also scored a try and kicked 8 of 9 conversions.For the Wolves, fullback Site Timu scored two of their five tries.
In Les Mills Colts John E Kelly Cup Division 1 fixtures, HOBM made it four wind from four to top the table with a 32-15 win over winless Paremata-Plimmerton. The visitors put in a spirited performance and the game remained close until the final few minutes when HOBM scored the match-clinching try.
Elsewhere, OBU Green beat Norths Blue 26-17, MSP bounced back from their loss last week to HOBM to beat Tawa 47-7 and Ories came back from their loss last week to Tawa to beat Petone 35-19.
In Colts Division 2, leaders Poneke beat Wellington 41-22, while OBU Black beat Johnsonville 26-24 and Avalon beat the Rams 14-10.
Norths and Petone are the joint leaders of the Ed Chaney Cup Premier Reserve Division 1 competition, with Norths slaying HOBM 98-5 after leading 45-0 at halftime and Petone edging Ories 22-19. The third match saw Tawa beating Poneke 33-22.
In the HD Morgan Premier Reserve Division 2 competition, MSP maintained their unbeaten record with an 83-0 win over the Wellington Axemen second XV, OBU beat Johnsonville 47-0 and the Rams beat Avalon 57-12.
In Women’s Tia Paasi Memorial Division 1 matches, Norths beat the OBU Impalas 49-5 and Ories defeated Petone 52-19.
In Women’s Izzy Ford Division 2 matches, Paremata-Plimmerton beat Poneke 44-7 and MSP beat HOBM 48-15.
At Porirua Park, Norths made a fast start against OBU, with fullback Julie Tusa slicing through to score two of their first three tries to put them ahead 15-0. OBU replied with a nice solo try to first five-eighth Montana Heslop to close the gap to 15-5. That was as close as they got, with Norths scoring twice more before halftime and leading 27-5 at the break.
Playing with the wind, the Impalas made much of the play in the second half but staunch defence kept them out. Norths scored four more tries over the final quarter, including two runaway tries at the end to left wing Kolora Lomani who scored a hat-trick. Norths could only convert two of their nine tries, an Achillles heel for this team in close matches.
Hooker Jane Bryce scored 18 points including two tries in her MSP team’s win, while halfback Tawny Burgess, left wing Mamele Kupa Cummings and centre Sharn Rohloff each scored braces for Paremata-Plimmerton and prop Laina Semu and centre Amanda Rasch scored two tries apiece for Ories in their win.
In U85kg Paul Potiki Shield matches, Avalon edged Paraparamu 19-13 and the Upper Hutt Rams pipped the Johnsonville Terrahawks 10-0 in probably the lowest scoring match of the day in Wellington club rugby.
In Premier 2 Tawa and the St Pats Town 2nd XV remained unbeaten. Tawa beat Hutt Valley HS 34-24 with the Town 2nds edging Wainuiomata 24-20. In another important grade result the St Pats Town and Silverstream Under 15s met in a top-of-the-table clash last night under lights, with Silverstream prevailing 15-7