Westlake Boys 1st XV vs Rosmini College 1st XV
Write up by Trey Tupu South – images Ollie Jones
The fourth round of the 1st XV competition witnessed the most anticipated match of the 2016 season. As defending North Harbour champions, Rosmini fought to defend their title against last year’s challengers Westlake Boys High School in front of home field support. The wet conditions played a prominent part in the game and contributed to a number of fumbling errors. In the end, Westlake managed to resurrect their 13-12 loss from last season’s final and secure a close, yet well-earned 20-15 victory. This win marked yet another milestone of the two teams closely contested history.
Both teams started the game as expected, with a high level of intensity. However, the first ten minutes of the game ultimately fell victim to the wet conditions. Both teams failed to handle the ball with great ability in the face of each other’s ferocious defence, losing the ball at tackle and breakdown situations. Although as the game developed, the players managed to adapt well, employing other tactics in hopes of upsetting the opposition. Despite early signs of Westlake dominance, Rosmini managed to get on top in the latter part of the first half. First five-eight Sekuini Tanimo showcased his control of the game by opting to kick and pin Westlake in their own 22. He demonstrated more skill later in the game as he placed a grubber through the Westlake defence, chased, collected the ball, and passed it to his team mate No.12 Taine Wattie, who dove over in the left hand corner. Westlake then managed to quickly salvage some points, after being awarded a penalty in front of the Rosmini posts. However half-back Connor Leather helped Rosmini convert a penalty of their own directly after this, giving Rosmini an 8-3 lead at halftime.
Westlake started the second half dominantly, with prop Leon Thambarin pushing over the try-line after a strong series of rucks, equalising the score. Despite Westlake maintaining their assault upon the try line, Rosmini centre Joe Taylor anticipated a long pass made along the Westlake backline, intercepting the ball at the Rosmini 22m and running the length of the field to score a try – one well applauded by the home crowd. This did not, however, sway the Westlake offensive tactics and they resumed their onslaught with greater intensity, with No.7 Jacob Katipa managing to drive over the try-line after yet another powerful set of ruck displays shown by Westlake. Still down 13-15, Westlake remained relentless in their search for the win. In the final analysis, the strength and skill of Westlake’s Inisi brothers secured the victory with centre Fine Inisi managing to split the Rosmini defence and slide to the try-line, capitalizing upon his brother No.8 Lotu Inisi’s tremendous running game, which remained pivotal throughout the match. A jubilant Westlake managed to hold on to a well-earned 20-15 win.
Scoreboard: Westlake Boys High School 20 vs Rosmini College 15 (Half time 3 – 8)
Tries: Leon Thambiran, Jacob Katipa, Fine Inisi
Conversion: Cameron Hey (1)
Penalties: Cooper Green (1)
Westlake Boys 1st XV vs Orewa 1st XV, Wednesday 18 May
Write up by Trey Tupu South
The third round of the North Harbour 1st XV competition got off to a wonderful start on Wednesday as Westlake hosted Orewa at their home ground. Despite the windy conditions, both teams battled on and showcased great resilience. In the end, Westlake’s superior passing and foot speed saw them sail home, securing a 32-3 win, although early signs of ill-discipline by Westlake saw them penalized four times within the first five minutes. As a result, Orewa was able to achieve great field position early on and secure the first points of the game with Orewa’s first-five Klay Murray converting a penalty kick. Westlake showed great strength to adjust and attack right back with points of their own. No. 14 Jack Fuller managed to muscle over in the right hand corner after a series of good backline passes. The remainder of the first half was dominated by Westlake, with the majority of time spent in Orewa’s 22. However, Orewa exhibited a solid line of defence limiting Westlake’s assault to just one more try, scored by lock Harry Forbes, after a series of strong, powerful ruck displays. A tenacious first half ended with Westlake ahead 10-3.
Westlake started the second half with a similar dominance shown in the first, with No. 7 Jacob Katipa scoring early on. Westlake’s left winger Ariki Hood-Kaitapu exhibited thrilling foot speed shortly after, chasing down a chip kick made by halfback Casey Smith at halfway and taking the odd bounce to score in the corner. Westlake’s conversion kicking suffered for the most part, due to the wind and try placement. Three kicker transitions eventually saw Cameron Hey successfully kick Westlake’s first and only successful conversion of the game. Westlake managed to score one final time with No.22 Bailey Katipa streaking through Orewa’s tiring defense untouched. Despite a final onslaught made by Orewa against Westlake’s try line, Westlake finished strong, salvaging their 32-3 win.
Westlake supporters could not be more confident, as Westlake now head towards their most anticipated match of the season against Rosmini, with their unbeaten reputation still intact.
Westlake Boys 1st XV vs Birkenhead College 1st XV, Saturday 14 May
Despite a number of injuries Westlake overran a spirited Birkenhead team. A total of 13 tries were scored in the match with Luke Jones scoring four tries in the first half alone. The Inisi brothers, Fine and Lotu, each grabbed a double on the day. Lotu in particular ran strong all day but some of his carries were lateral. Spencer McDowall had a good game breaking the line regularly. Mention must be made of Casey Smith at halfback who provided the backs with good ball throughout the match.
Scoreboard: Westlake 79 – Birkenhead 3 (Halftime: 48 – 3)
Tries: Luke Jones (4); Fine Inisi (2); Lotu Inisi (2); Jacob Katipa; Harry Collard; Casey Smith; Jack Fuller; Ryotaro Ozaki
Conversion: Copper Green (7)
Westlake Boys 4th XV vs Long Bay College XV
Taking on Long Bay 2nd XV at their home ground is always going to be a challenge and with the threatening weather forecast reducing the match to two 35 minute halves, the Westlake 4th XV had a challenging morning ahead on Saturday. The first half proved exactly that with both teams having their moments on attack. Westlake were the first team to capitalise with a try scored wide out by Patrick Corcoran, who had an excellent game at prop and then having to come back on in the second half on the flank. Josh Marshall converted well from wide out. Matthew Budd, another 4th XV newbie, performed two great pieces of defence to prevent Long Bay from scoring but the home team eventually managed to put points on the board late in the first half to lock the score up 7 each at half time.
The second half saw the bench emptied as the 16th player stepped in with winds blowing strongly on Westlake’s back. They dominated the half scoring three unanswered tries and digging deep in the final 5 minutes to prevent Long Bay from scoring. Tom Newland took charge in the line out taking not only the team’s ball but some of the opposition as well. The blistering pace of Connor Marshall placed into the open by Ashton Howard and zooming 35 metres to score in the corner scudding near the touch line. Ethan Schaumkel, the team’s ‘Energiser Bunny’ played everywhere. The resolve this team shows, especially on defence at the goal line shows the steel they have for having each other’s backs. The team were worthy victors, winning the match 24 to 7.
Other Rugby Results
|Westlake Boys||1st XV||Rosmini College||W||20-15|
|Westlake Boys||2nd XV||Whangaparoa College 1st XV||W||60-0|
|Westlake Boys||3rd XV||Rosmini College 3rd XV||L||0-19|
|Westlake Boys||4th XV||Long Bay College 2nd XV||W||24-7|
|Westlake Boys||4A||Rosmini College||L||15-18|
|Westlake Boys||5A||Rangitoto College||W||57-0|
|Westlake Boys||5B||Hobsonville Point School||W||32-26|
|Westlake Boys||6A||Mahurangi College||W||36-10|
|Westlake Boys||6B||Albany Junior High||L||31-34|
|Westlake Boys||7 Green||Rosmini College||L||5-48|
|Westlake Boys||7 Red||Kaipara College||W||15-12|