1st XV vs Rangitoto on Saturday 1 July
The Woodhouse Shield was up for grabs as well as semi-final placings for this encounter in wet weather on Saturday. From the kick off, Rangitoto kept possession of the ball for lengthy periods of time. Their forwards were committed and turned over ball at regular intervals throughout the match. Although Rangitoto had long periods of possession they did not threaten the Westlake line largely due to an organised and resolute defence.
Markku Venter opened the scoring after the backs showed how dangerous they can be with ball in hand. Johnny Cooper added the second and converted both tries despite the windy and wet conditions, in helping Westlake take a half time lead of 14-0.
Westlake continued to look threatening in the second half and left a number of scoring opportunities on the field in both halves. Tristan Shepherd added the third try after continued pressure and a number of phases. However, Rangitoto spotted a gap and after a quick tap penalty, ran in a try from 50 metres. Tiennan Costley, who had a great game in defence, went crashing over for a deserved try and a convincing victory.
The Woodhouse Shield is still safe in the cabinet and will be defended against Massey on 29 July to earn the right to put our name on the shield again. This week Westlake play Birkenhead and then Takapuna in the holidays, followed by an exchange with New Plymouth Boys High on 22 July.
Scoreboard: Westlake 28 Rangitoto 5
Tries: Markku Venter, Johnny Cooper, Tristan Shepherd, Tiennan Costley
Conversions: Johnny Cooper (4)
1st XI v Auckland Grammar School
The first game of round two welcomed perennial rivals Auckland Grammar School. The game started brightly for Westlake and after some good build-up play the ball fell to Jackson Woods, who shot goal-wards, only for the ball to strike the legs of a defender and deflect away from the goal, with the Grammar keeper seemingly beaten. However, the first goal was not far away, with Matt Conroy winning the ball in the box and a clumsy tackle from the Grammar defender resulting in a penalty. Matt scored from the spot and Westlake went deservedly 1-0 up. Unfortunately, soon afterwards Westlake conceded a free kick just outside the penalty area and a direct shot hit the underneath of the crossbar and bounced down towards the goal line. After consulting the assistant referee, a goal was given and the scores were even.
The second half started with both teams pressing on attack to break the deadlock. It took a shot wide out from Dylan Hobson to regain the lead. With the score at 2-1, Westlake started to show more enterprise and shortly thereafter, a Westlake goal was ruled offside by the referee. Thus, the game ended with Westlake winning both the away and home games against Grammar this season, a double that has been achieved for the first time for a number of years.
Ist XI v St Kentigern College – 24th June 2017
The last game of the first round found the 1st X1 playing the unbeaten and top of the table St Kentigern College. The game started in heavy fog, which rolled in even more during the early part of the game but lifted enough for the game to continue. Befitting their position on the table, St Kentigern created a number of opportunities which a hesitant Westlake defence could not cope with, resulting in Westlake being 3-0 down at half time. Neil Emblen, the Westlake coach, had a positive discussion with his team at half time and what a difference it made.
At the start of the second half, Westlake started to win the 50/50 contests and from one of these challenges, the ball was played deep into the St Kentigern half and they failed to clear it. The energetic and skilful Matt Conroy latched onto it and fed Ronan Wynne on the left, who hit a first time shot across the keeper into the far corner of the goal. Very quickly afterwards, a long ball found Conroy and as quick as a flash he went past two defenders and another shot across the keeper into the net and Westlake were well back into the game. Within minutes the score was 3-3. Matt Conroy was tormenting the St Kentigern defence with his pace and incisive running and it came as no surprise when another ball found him just outside the box, where he drove it past the keeper and into the net.
Unfortunately, Westlake could not quite grab another goal and it was against the run of play when a square ball in defence was intercepted and St Kentigern took the lead again at 4-3. Shortly afterwards another error at the back made it 5-3 to seal the match for St Kent’s.
It was a brave performance by the 1st X1 who had an outstanding second half against the top team and they now go into the second round knowing how well they can play.
1st XV vs Whangarei Boys – 24th June 2017
Westlake opened the scoring early against their Northern visitors with a try from Johnny Cooper, his first of three tries on the day. Markku Venter soon dotted down thereafter and within 10 minutes the score had stretched to more than 20 points. The referee, Ryan Borthwick allowed the game to flow and despite the wet weather, Westlake continued to play an expansive game.
The backs scored 11 of the 12 tries on the day and the second half was a steady procession of points. David Toia, the only forward to score, barged over just on full time. The 1st XV stuck to their structure and game plan, and showed what they are capable of.
Next week, Westlake will face a much improved Rangitoto and will have to defend the shield. This promises to be a big game and the team are looking forward to the challenge.
Scoreboard: Westlake 78-0 (Half time 31 – 0)
Tries: Johnny Cooper (3); Arikitoia Hood-Kaitapu (2); Nikau Graham (2) Baylee Katipa; Nikau Drage; Markku Venter; Spencer McDowell; David Toia
Conversions: Johnny Cooper (9)
WESTLAKE BOYS RUNNERS ACHIEVE THE SEEMINGLY IMPOSSIBLE
On Saturday 17th June Westlake Boys High School competed in the New Zealand Secondary Schools Cross Country Championships in Christchurch. This year was saw one of the biggest ever fields, with close to 1000 entrants from all over the country. The Westlake Boys 33 man squad had trained hard for this race, which was certainly evident in their outstanding results on the day. The Westlake Boys Cross Country team made a clean sweep of gold medals, winning all six team contests – an amazing feat that has never been achieved in National Cross Country Champs before.
The Year 9 Boys’ six person team, consisting of Ben Ruscoe (3rd), Etienne Piere (5th) Toby Saxby (11th), Sam Berry (15th), James Hopwood (46th) and Liam Hopwood (58th), had a dominant performance with a team score of 138, 100 points less than the second place team. Similarly in the three person team Ben, Etienne and Toby scored an impressive 19 to win gold, which was also well ahead of the nearest competition on 56.
In the Junior Boys’ race the three and six person team were Blair Hill (3rd), Jude Darby (6th), Arsh Kazi (16th), Max Johnson (20th), JJ Weston (24th) and George Luty (47th). Defending their 2016 titles, the boys put in an impressive performance, winning the six person race by 160 points and the three person by 19 points.
In the 219 strong Senior Boys’ race, Westlake ran well with the winning six person team including four Year 11 boys, who were competing in the senior division for the first time. The six person team of Joe Clark (6th), Murdoch McIntyre (7th), Stuart Hofmeyr (15th), David Moore (33rd), Daniel Robertson (55th)and Zach Keenan (75th) won gold with 191 points, 59 less than the silver medallists. Lastly, the three person team won gold with 28 points, an incredible 39 points less than the runners-up.
The wins across the board were a remarkable achievement and a true testament to the boys’ dedication, commitment and hard work, and that of their tireless coach, Theuns Strydom. The team now heads off to Kenya and South Africa on Sunday on a three week trip, where they will represent Westlake in Cross Country and Road Running.
AUCKLAND SCHOLASTIC SURFING CHAMPIONSHIPS
The second round of the Auckland Scholastic Surfing Championships Comp was held in testing 3-4 foot conditions with the odd 5 foot wave at Piha. There was some epic surfing throughout the day, especially in the U14, U16 and U18 boys’ divisions. Westlake had a strong contingent including surfers: Ollie Charlesworth, Sam Charlesworth (gaining 2nd in U14 boys) Matt Archer, Oska Gosling, Ben Counsell, Jackson Crone, Jackson Peak (4th U14 boys), Daniel Gray and Kade Scheib (4th U18 boys). Despite tough conditions, the students performed well, with Sam Charlesworth maintaining the lead in the U14 Tri-series. The next event is scheduled for June 25th. The Tri-series allows boys from Auckland schools to compete for a spot at the Nationals to be held in Gisborne later in the year.
1st XV v Orewa 1st XV – June 17
Taking nothing for granted, Orewa were up to the task in the second round of the North Harbour Competition. Orewa managed to keep possession of the ball for long periods of time and put Westlake under pressure on numerous occasions. Orewa were by far the dominant team in this opening stanza.
It took almost 30 minutes before there was a score in the match. Baylee Katipa opened the scoring and was soon followed by Max Tu’inukuafe adding a second try to give Westlake a flattering half time lead. Westlake were not up to their usual high standard and dropped the ball at crucial stages, missed tackles and did not get enough numbers to the breakdown.
Whatever the coaches said at halftime worked. Within 10 minutes at the start of the second half, Nikau Graham and Finau Paea scored tries and the game was put beyond doubt. The players had lifted their game and there seemed to be more energy and intensity in the way the team played. Two further tries from Nikau Drage and Arikitoia Hood-Kaitapu sealed a comfortable victory.
Next week Westlake face Whanagarei at home and a far more disciplined effort will be required.
Scoreboard: Westlake 36 Orewa 0 (Half time 12 – 0)
Tries: Baylee Katipa; Max Tu’inukuafe; Nikau Graham; Finau Paea; Nikau Drage; Arikitoia Hood-Kaitapu
Conversions: Johnny Cooper (4)
2nd and 3rd XVs
Back home the Westlake 2nd XV were taking on Mahurangi 1stXV in the toughest game of the season. Both teams were undefeated going into the game and showed an eagerness to play at pace. A quick line out by standout Jackson Ephraims saw Jarrod Ferguson punting the ball forward for Dylan Chesney to run on to and score. Just before half-time Westlake worked the ball back and forth the width of the park until No.8 Caleb MacDonald found a gap and scored. Mahurangi however were determined to make amends for their loss to Westlake in last year’s final and surged back into the game. A late converted try levelled the game 12 all, and set the stage for what is looking like another exciting Final this year between the two teams.
The 3rd XV played Albany Senior 1stX V and once again displayed some good form, winning 26-7. Try scorers included No.8 Kade Scheib, No.13 Salim Sultandi and No.6 Todd Milliken (x2).
Premier Team vs. Rangitoto College
A packed house at Rangitoto College bore witness to a clash of the heavyweights as the only two unbeaten sides left in the premier competition met head to head on the 9th June 2017. Despite huge Westlake support, Rangitoto led early at 12-7. Proving that defense was to be the story of the night, Jesse Winter, a mid-season addition due to an ankle injury to Sam Mennenga, immediately made his presence felt. He checked into the game midway through the first quarter and made it extremely hard for Rangitoto to gain a rhythm early. The score at the end of the first was 19-19.
In the second quarter, a James Moors 3 and good work around the bucket helped the boys end a 4 minute drought of scoring and Ethan Martin made his presence felt with an aggressive slash to the lane. A Thabo Manyere dunk, off a James Moors pass, got the crowd in voice and 3s from James Moors and Alex (Ash) Freeman brought Westlake back within 2 at the half, trailing 39-37.
A pull-up jumper from a struggling Reuben Fitzgerald opened the second half and this seemed to spur the Westlake team into action. James Moors gained a warning for excessive hanging on the rim after a thunderous transition dunk off an assist from Reuben Fitzgerald. Defence was proving to be the key to a victory in this match, and with Westlake struggling to execute their game plan, Rangitoto proved their 3 point shooting was the difference, taking a 62-48 lead at the end of the 3rd.
Seven straight points for Reuben Fitzgerald trimmed the deficit to 10 points midway through the final period. Successive steals led to Fitzgerald pushing the ball and gaining two quick assists. Jesse Winter and Josh Hidalgo were responsible for finishing the plays, as the lead was trimmed to 65-63. Westlake provided the clamps on defence from here on in and a Fitzgerald isolation 3 stole the game.
Final score: 74-67 – Moors 19pts/12rebs, Fitzgerald 15pts/11rebs, Manyere 13pts/19rebs.
Premier Team vs. MAGS
On the 16th June 2017 the Premier Team took on Mount Albert Grammar School at home. The opening quarter of the game was very back and forth, as the inside presence of the MAGS pairing proved difficult for Westlake to keep out of the paint. With the absence of both starting power forwards, James Moors, and starting centre Thabo Manyere, the Westlake boys had to dig deep to keep the score to a close 23-19 in MAGS’ favour at the quarter’s end.
The second quarter started off being all MAGS. The Westlake boys struggled to keep the MAGS big players off the glass, ensuring that MAGS kept the lead midway through the 2nd. However, the introduction of Jesse Winter proved a catalyst to spur the Westlake boys into action; four straight 3s gave Westlake a 44-42 lead at the half.
The third quarter began with Westlake holding off the MAGS defence, allowing the boys to get out and run on the fast break, led by Marc Malingin and Reuben Fitzgerald. This equated to a 14 point lead early in the 3rd for Westlake. However, MAGS began to grind the lead back through stiff defence and a well-executed offensive game plan, bringing the score back to a 63-59 lead for the visitors at the end of the period.
Being down going into the 4th has been the story for this year’s Westlake Premiers and this Friday proved no different. The deficit amounted to as many as seven early on in the 4th before Reuben Fitzgerald riled up the defence, leading to some quick fast break points. The Westlake boys responded well to this quickening of pace, with Matthew Cairns-Hita heating up for 8 quick points, including two 3s. The game came down to the wire, but again the Westlake team proved composed in another high pressure situation. The home side closed the game out, 85-80 and go to 7-0 on the season.
Final score: Westlake 85 – Mt Albert Grammar 80 – Fitzgerald 22pts/5ast/4reb, Winter 16pts, Cairns-Hita 14.
1st XI vs. St. Peter’s College – 16th June 2017
- Williams, D. Hobson, H. Piper, E. Tessadri, C. Foulds, M. Wood, M. Lamont, B. Kelly, J. Benbow, J. Olivier, M. Conroy
- Scopas, A. Al-Majumei, R. Wynne, D. Mitten L. Wilson
Half time score – 1-0
Full time score – 2-2
Scorers – J. Benbow, M. Conroy
The First XI travelled to St. Peter’s College to play this week’s ASSFA Premier League game on Friday evening on the SPC artificial turf.
The team were looking to build upon the winning momentum they had gathered against Mount Roskill Grammar the week before. Coach Neil Emblen selected another attacking line up, in a game that Westlake were very much looking to take three points from. However, the game did not go well from the start, with Westlake looking cagey and sloppy in possession. The side were punished midway through the first half when they failed to stop a rudimentary cross into the box and then inexplicably left the SPC striker free, 8 yards from goal, to head the ball past GK Williams. Rather than galvanising the team, the goal had the opposite effect and Westlake began to look even nervier as the half wore on.
Nevertheless, the side did finish the half on level terms, with a goal from a penalty. A blocked shot was adjudged to have been handled and the referee pointed to the spot. Joe Benbow stepped up to take the kick, coolly slotting into the bottom corner. The goal marked his 7th of the season and a fine return for the makeshift striker.
The second half saw Westlake play slightly better and they looked more intense, when with and without the ball. The increased intensity was what saw the team take the lead. NZ U17 striker, Matt Conroy, picked up the ball and ran at the SPC defence. After beating a couple of players, he fired a precise left footed drive into the bottom corner giving the GK no chance. A fine solo goal for the recently returned front man.
It now looked as if Westlake were the more likely to push ahead and put the game beyond SPC’s reach. Alas, this was not to be the case as SPC were awarded a penalty of their own. A long ball into the box, led to a clear push on the SPC attacking player. The referee put the whistle to his lips and duly awarded the spot kick. The SPC player stepped up and set GK Williams the wrong way to level the score.
Little action of note followed in the closing stanza and the game petered out to an anti-climactic finish. A point was little consolation to the Westlake side, as they had firmly set this fixture aside as a winnable contest. The lesson here must surely be that anything other than giving 100% effort and sticking to a game plan, inevitably leads to an error prone and lack lustre performance.
Nonetheless, the team must pick themselves up quickly, for Tuesday’s KO Cup game vs. MAGS at home (3:15pm) on our Turf. The team will surely be looking to right a few wrongs in their performance, as they seek to advance to the Quarter Final stages.
First XI Football Home v Mount Roskill Grammar – 9th June 2017
- Williams, J. Woods, H. Piper, E. Tessadri, C. Foulds, M. Lamont, R. Wynne, B. Kelly, J. Benbow, J. Olivier, M. Conroy
- Scopas (on for B. Williams 65th minute), A. Al-Majumei (on for M. Conroy 75th minute) D. Hobson (unused), D. Mitten (on for R. Wynne 60th minute), L. Wilson (unused)
Half time score – 3-0
Full time score – 6-0
Scorers – J. Benbow 2, J. Olivier, M. Lamont, B. Kelly, A. Al-Majumei
The First XI hosted Mount Roskill Grammar on the QBE Artificial Turf on Friday night and welcomed backed Head Coach, Neil Emblen from his sojourn with the NZ U20 World Cup team. Knowing that a win would likely lift Westlake into 3rd place on the table, the team set about their task with purpose and precision.
Westlake found themselves in front in the second minute of the game and this settled any nerves or apprehension they may have had. A quality delivery from the cultured left foot of Jordan Olivier saw a scramble in the box. Captain Kelly was brave as he seized on an opportunity to poke the ball home from close range, kick starting a really positive evening for the home side in the process.
The lead was doubled inside the first 15 minutes as a ball down the line from wing back, Jackson Woods, brought to life the jet heeled striker, Matt Conroy. His pace, which unsettled MRGS all night, easily beat his marker and his cut back found a waiting Jordan Olivier. A great first touch set the attacking midfielder up for a simple tap in and with it, Westlake’s attack minded tactics had sprang to life.
The third and final goal of the first half was a real moment of individual brilliance from holding midfield player, Matt Lamont. The commanding and composed player found himself on the ball a full 30 yards from goal, he set himself with one touch and arrowed a superb strike that beat the keeper, cannoned off the underside of the crossbar and bounced into the net – a real moment to savour for him in his maiden season.
With a three goal lead, the Westlake side returned to the changing rooms in a commanding position and safe in the knowledge that if they carried on playing such offensive and penetrative football, they would see another three points chalked beside their name.
The First XI very much did what was asked of them at half time and the second half started much as the first ended, with Westlake fully in command and attacking at will.
Goal number four, came courtesy of striker Joe Benbow, who was put into a crossing position by Woods. Although the industrious forward looked to pick out a recipient for his cross, fortuitously for Benbow, the ball arced beyond the Goalkeeper’s reach and into the net.
Benbow wasn’t finished with his scoring for the evening however and in the 75th minute, he had his brace. A great cross from Jackson Woods would see the Goalkeeper only parry it out a short distance and onto the waiting head of Benbow. The striker’s looping header beat the keeper and the First XI now had their fifth goal. By this stage the bench had already been cleared and it was one of the substitutes who would cap the evening. A deep corner was headed back across the box by Enzo Tessadri and the first player to react in the 6 yard box was Abdul Al-Majumei, who wrapped his foot around the ball and powered it home.
Westlake must be given credit for an assured performance that will give them much confidence; six goals and a clean sheet was a fitting outcome for team, who had prepared diligently throughout the week. From start to finish the side dominated possession and created numerous chances, whilst being largely untroubled in defensive areas, owing to some good performances from the three centre backs.
With a full strength squad now at his disposal, Coach Emblen has the type of quandary he has waited for all season – having to pick his starting XI from a larger number of quality, committed and determined players.
The First XI will look to build upon this result when they travel to St. Peter’s College on 16th June for a 6pm kick off.
1st XV v Rosmini – 10th June 2017
The scene was set for another epic battle between the two leading North Harbour teams. Rosmini had everything to play for including winning back the Woodhouse Shield.
From the kick-off it was evident that this was going to be another tough battle. Rosmini kicked off and immediately put Westlake under pressure. An attempted clearance kick was charged down and Westlake were judged off side. Rosmini decided to kick into the corner and after a couple of phases went over and scored to great jubilation. The Rosmini defence soaked up the pressure and it took a full 25 minutes before Westlake opened the scoring when Lotu Inisi used his strength to get over for a try. Rosmini replied immediately by kicking a penalty to regain the lead. The Westlake backs started gaining ascendency and made inroads into the Rosmini defence. It was no surprise that just before half time Baylee Katipa made his way over for a well-deserved try. Rosmini closed the gap through a penalty in the 40th minute, just before the half-time whistle.
In the second half, Westlake dominated territory and possession. A solid Rosmini defence and a lack of patience by Westlake kept the score very close until Nikau Drage left his defenders flatfooted and scored under the posts. It was only late in the second half that Preston Smith-Owen scored the bonus point try.
This match concluded the first round of the competition and next week we travel to Orewa College. Westlake retained the Woodhouse shield and need another three defences in the forthcoming games against Whanagarei, Rangitoto and Massey to win the right to put our name on the shield again.
Scoreboard: Westlake 28 Rosmini 13 (Half time 14 – 13)
Tries: Lotu Inisi, Baylee Katipa; Nikau Drage, Preston Smith-Owen
Conversions: Johnny Cooper (4)
2nd XV v Northcote College, 3rd XV v Takapuna Grammar
Once again the 2ndXV were in try-scoring form. The team are playing some really good rugby characterised by their wingers scoring in the corners. By half time they had a healthy 26-7 lead over Northcote College. By full time they stretched it out to 61-19. The real test for this team will be next week’s home game against Mahurangi 1stXV who have also been winning by similar margins.
The 3rds saw some great tries by Jackson Hemmingsen and Luke Mihaljevich. The team didn’t make life easy for themselves however, letting Takapuna 2ndXV back into the game. It took a try by Zac Stevenson to win back the lead and with it the game. The final score was 17-15.
The 5As were defeated by an on-form Kelston side, but in true Westlake spirit a good number of the team returned to the school to cheer the firsts on.
|WEEKLY RUGBY DRAWS AND RESULTS||DATE:||10-Jun|
|1st XV||Rosmini 1st XV||WBHS 1||12.00pm||W||28-13|
|2nd XV||Northcote 1st XV||Northcote||12.00pm||W||61-19|
|3rd XV||Takapuna 2nd XV||WBHS 1||9.30am||W||17-15|
|4th XV||Albany Senior 1st XV||WBHS 2||9.30am||L||17-19|
|5B||Albany Jnr||WBHS 2||10.40am||L||20-33|
|6B||Takapuna A||WBHS 3||10.40am||Friendly game|
|7 Green||Kaipara College A||Kaipara||9.30am||W||72-17|
|7 Red||Takapuna A||Takapuna||9.30am||L||17-20|
The Westlake 1st XV had one of their biggest challenges of the season when they squared off against Massey High School on Friday, June 2nd. Massey started strongly and scored first. Nikau Graham answered with a try for Westlake. However, an emboldened Massey looked threatening racing to a 14-5 lead. A great line out win to towering No.4 Tiennan Costley set Johnny Cooper up for a very timely try, narrowing the margin as half-time approached.
Coach Aaron Katipa encouraged the players to believe in themselves and the opportunities would come. True to form, Lotu Inisi crashed over for a try, quickly followed by Sean Vete. Massey was forced to counter the threat from Westlake’s forwards by committing more players to the rucks and this created space out wide. Firstly Spencer McDowall found a gap and scored. Then it was a great combination of Nikau Graham and Johnny Cooper that broke the line, taking the score out to the final result of 36-14.
Next week Westlake take on Rosmini College in a highly-anticipated top of the table match. The team would love to see lots of supporters in their Westlake colours as they defend the Woodhouse Shield.
The Westlake 2nd XV also faced off against Massey but with home advantage. Westlake were able to surpass Massey with their passing and running game. A clever back move saw Ollie Charlesworth split the defence and break-through for an impressive try. Dylan Chesney kept up his record of scoring twice. Not to be outshone, forwards Jordan Quinn and Caleb McDonald accounted for four tries between them, including a 60m dash from Caleb. Ollie Watts also had a standout game at No6. The final score was 59-0, a very pleasing result for Coach, Mr Henley who stepped up to take the reins on Saturday.
The 5As had a much more formidable challenge, facing the Sacred Heart Under15s. Stuart van Gelder and Bryn Moloney scrummed very well with Chlayton Frans making himself known all over the park. Once again Brook Robson controlled the game well at half back. Coach Mr Mildenhall was very impressed by Peti Tavui and Caleb Falloon. While Westlake produced a valiant effort, it was Sacred Heart who won the tussle, by the narrowest of margins, 22-21.
Rugby 1st XV vs Rangitoto College, Saturday 20th May
Despite the atrocious conditions, the top of the table class did not disappoint. Both teams came into the game unbeaten after Rangitoto had accounted for Rosmini College and Massey High School in earlier rounds. With the Woodhouse Shield up for grabs, there was a lot to play for on the day.
Both teams played some good rugby at times and gave everything for the full 70 minutes. Rangitoto had early dominance in the scrums before Westlake wrestled the advantage. The backs were prepared to run the ball and did very well in the conditions. Rangitoto had two long-range penalty attempts at goal in the first half but both came up short. Westlake created but squandered a few chances and it was only deep into referee’s optional time at the end of the first half that Tupou Afungia managed to get over the line for the opening try of the match. Casey Smith duly converted.
With the wind behind their backs, Westlake continued to dominate possession and it was only handling errors that prevented them from extending their lead and exerting their dominance. Lotu Inisi continued his mammoth work rate from the first half. He regularly took the ball up, broke tackles, drew in the opposition defence and made good metres to put Westlake on the front foot. It was no surprise, and just reward for him, when another of these runs ended in him crashing over for Westlake’s second try. Casey smith again converted, in tricky conditions. Rangitoto pressed hard in the closing minutes but the Westlake defence held strong and kept Rangitoto scoreless.
Westlake was delighted with the victory and winning back the Woodhouse Shield.
Scoreboard: Westlake 14 Rangitoto 0 (Half time 7 – 0)
Tries: Tupou Afungia; Lotu Inisi
Conversions: Casey Smith (2)
First XI Football vs Macleans College, Friday 19th May
- Williams, J. Woods, M. Wood, H. Piper, C. Foulds, M. Lamont, R. Wynne, D. Hobson, D Mitten, J. Olivier, L. Wilson
- Scopas, A. Al-Majmuei (on for L. Wilson 83rd minute) J. Scott (on for M. Lamont 65th minute), E. Tessadri (on for D. Hobson 45th minute),
Half time score – 0-0
Full time score – 0-0
The First XI looked to bounce back from a heavy defeat against Sacred Heart College with an away trip to the east of Auckland, matching up against Macleans College. They hoped to play more free-flowing football than they had in recent weeks.
The team were buoyed by the debuts of both Matt Lamont and Dylan Hobson, both of whom had suffered injuries to delay their first team bow thus far. Unfortunately, Westlake Boys were without their skipper, Bronson Kelly, who looks to be faced with at least two weeks on the side-lines, owing to an ankle injury. Matt Conroy, the talismanic international striker, is still to feature for the side due to his own injury problems. Westlake are yet in a position to get all of their best players on the field at the same time.
The opening stanza was a cagey affair with very little action of note. Westlake had the lion’s share of possession, but struggled to make any meaningful inroads with the ball. A couple of half chances fell to the feet of Levi Wilson, largely of his own making, due to some intelligent running. However, Westlake were unable to find an answer for the staunch Macleans side that they found in front of them. Goalkeeper, Bradley Williams, barely needed his gloves as Macleans had no chances of their own in the first half.
The half ended much as it had begun, with a pedestrian pace and a lack of tenacity. Half time saw Dylan Hobson’s debut curtailed as he felt a reoccurrence of his injury and, with a reshuffle of the midfield, Enzo Tessadri entered the fray.
Westlake started the second half with a greater sense of urgency and an increased vigour. The ball was now moving with a little more fluency in midfield areas and the side looked far more likely to fashion a break through. Striker Levi Wilson came close to breaking the deadlock when a ball to him saw him take an instinctive first touch to beat his marker on the turn, but his left-footed shot couldn’t find the net. A further chance came through Daniel Mitten down the left, as he drove into the box, but snatching at his shot meant that the ball missed the target.
Macleans almost opened their account when a lack of urgency to press the ball from Westlake lead to their striker bearing in on goal. However, a good save from goalkeeper Williams at the feet of the Macleans’ striker averted the danger.
At around the hour mark, it was Matt Lamont who was next to join the injury list with a back injury, a real shame for the Year 13 student as he looked in command of the midfield up to this point. He was replaced by the Year 11 winger, Jayden Scott.
The pace of the game had reverted to one similar to the first half and looked to be petering out to a dismal conclusion. Matt Wood hit a good free kick that the Macleans’ goalkeeper was equal to, but Westlake failed to follow up on the rebound.
Two incidents at the climax to the game could have seen Macleans take all three points. Firstly, only another good save from Bradley Williams prevented Macleans taking the lead. Secondly, with barely a minute left to play, an innocuous free kick, some 35 metres from goal, was struck by a Macleans player. What appeared to be a rudimentary catch from Williams, was left to chance by him and as it went over his head, it cannoned off the cross bar, for the Westlake defence to scramble clear. This incident marked the end of a match that cannot be considered as a good advert for the First XI.
A slightly lacklustre display, coupled with a lack of tenacious intent, will have left the side feeling this was very much two points lost, rather than one gained. Westlake’s next fixture sees them start their knock out cup campaign.
Premier Basketball vs Auckland Grammar School, 19th May
Auckland Grammar School visited Westlake Boys High in arguably the game of the round in the Auckland Premier Grade basketball on Friday, May 19th as two of the top four sides from last season went head to head. Despite a second straight thirty points haul from Tom Higgins, a more balanced home- side scoring effort prevailed, with Westlake recording an 85-78 win in front of a good-sized crowd.
Campbell Green opened the scoring for Auckland Grammar but point guard Josh Hidalgo scored a couple of baskets worthy of a highlights reel and Reuben Fitzgerald knocked down a pair of jump shots as Westlake forged a handy 23-13 first quarter lead.
Green executed a couple of strong baseline drives to give AGS impetus, but a dunk and then a left- handed put-back from Thabo Manyere put a stop to that. Westlake led 33-24 with AGS coach Dave Mackay needing a time out.
An Anzac Risetto tip-in got AGS on the move again. Manyere scored in transition but play was interrupted by a spate of fouls at the back end of the first half; one the hosts were content with as they led 38-28. Fitzgerald, with 10 points, led all scorers at the break.
Manyere showed his versatility by landing a triple to open the second half, but five quick points from the tireless Tom Higgins and a reverse lay-up from Leroy Brown kept AGS in contention. Westlake coach Zac Fitzgerald wasn’t happy with his team’s start to the half and called a timeout with offensive turnovers high on his agenda. A Matthew Cairns-Hita three helped Westlake’s cause, as did Malingin’s transition points. Teancum McCarthy defied the tall timber to grab an offensive rebound and put-back and when Brown scored on the break the scores were levelled, 55 apiece. At three-quarter time Westlake were protecting the slimmest of leads at 60-59.
In the final quarter, a Moors’ three followed by a mid-range jumper moved Westlake 67-61 ahead. Cairns-Hita extended the lead to 73-61 with a transition basket before AGS became more and more dependent on their go-to man Higgins. He had 27 points in the second half alone but, despite his best efforts, Westlake was always able to retain close to a ten points buffer in the final stanza.
The lead was 81-69 after a score from Ethan Martin, who had a fine game, and despite late baskets from McCarthy, Higgins and Brown, the hosts controlled the closing minutes to record a second straight win.
Score: Westlake 85 – Manyere 17pts/13rebs, Moors 15pts/6 blocks, Hidalgo 14, Cairns-Hita 12. Auckland Grammar 78 – Higgins 33, Brown 10, McCarthy 9
The National Tennis Championships were held at Scarbro Tennis Centre in Auckland, between the top eight schools in the country. Westlake Boys’ first fixture was against St Kentigern College, one of the tournament favourites. All our players tried hard but only Chris Zhang was able to win his singles match, with some outstanding shots. Our next opponents were Christ’s College, the Christchurch champions. We lost 2-4 but Chris Zhang once again played extremely well, defeating the under 17 national champion. Bailey Sutton also played a very solid game to win his match.
On Wednesday Westlake played Hamilton Boys High School and sealed a very satisfying 6-0 victory. The team then played doubles matches against Tauranga Boys High School, but suffered their most disappointing loss, 1-5. Up against Auckland Grammar next, Westlake fought hard with a 3 – 3 result losing on a countback. Chris was back on form again and combined with Harry Browning to win their doubles. Aden Borlase-Mills also played well for another win.
Despite some challenges with rain, venues, traffic and injuries, the standard of tennis played by the team was outstanding and resulted in a 7th placing at Nationals.
Team: Chris Zhang No1, Leo Cho No2, Harry Browning No3, Bailey Sutton No4, Aden Borlase-Mills No5.
The Premier Water polo team gained 5th place at the North Island Championships. They only narrowly missed out on a top four place and made solid improvements over the last few days of competition. Westlake were pleased to beat Rosmini 8-3 on Sunday morning and are hopeful of gaining a top four place at Nationals, as they certainly have the skills to do so.
3 x 3 BASKETBALL
The Westlake 3 on 3 basketball team came 3rd at nationals in Tauranga. They fought hard over the opening two days of the competition play to be placed equal top in their pool. However, they lost key player James Moors to an ankle injury in the process. They had to play the final five games of the competition, including the knockout rounds, without a sub. The semi-final was a narrow four point loss to Palmerston North, which showed the strength of character in the boys.
Team: James Moors, Thabo Manyere, Rueben Fitzgerald and Joshua Hidalgo.
Westlake Boys’ Junior Orienteering team experienced outstanding success at the Auckland Sprint finals, taking all the medals:
1st – Campbell Syme
2nd – Alex Jobbins
3rd – Hayden Williams
Nathan Borton came 7th.
In the New Zealand Rogaine Championships, the Westlake Boys team of Taylor Haynes, Ashton Philo and Charl Urlich came 3rd in the four hour event.
After a day and a half delay due to wet weather, Westlake were finally able to kick off their summer sports week T20 tournament at Waikaraka Park against Mount Albert Grammar. Westlake won the toss and elected to bat first on a ‘sticky pitch’ and struggled to 109/9 after their 20 overs. Jock McKenzie’s score of 29 off 34 balls was the only one of note. This small total was always going to be hard to defend but Westlake’s effort got off to a great start, restricting MAGs to 12-4 by the 5th over, mainly due to some very good bowling by Jock McKenzie. MAGs recovered, but at 75-6 after 16 overs they still required another 35 runs off just 24 balls. Their lower order batted very well and got them to within 7 with one over remaining. It was a real nail biter and it came down to 1 run required off 1 ball. Unfortunately, MAGs were able to score it, winning by 3 wickets. Pick of the bowlers was Jock McKenzie with 3-14 in 4 overs.
OTHER WEEKEND SPORTS FIXTURES
The Premier A Tennis team played St Kentigern College 2 on Saturday, April 1. All members of the team played well and had an excellent 6 – 0 win, despite being very tired after a week playing tennis for the school at Nationals.
Team: Chris Zhang, Harry Browning, Bailey Sutton, Aden Borlase-Mills
WBHS 1stXV RUBGY v DE LA SALLE
The official start to the North Harbour rugby season is still more than a month away but already the 1st XV preparations are in full swing. Saturday saw the first pre-season game against De La Salle College, in what turned out to be a very exciting and promising opener. Unfortunately the team had its numbers severely depleted with injuries sustained in the earlier 7s and 10s tournaments. Also missing were players representing Westlake at volleyball and water polo. This, however, presented opportunities for several newcomers, who admirably stepped up to the challenge.
The game began as a real arm wrestle, with both sides probing hard at each other’s defences. Several opportunities on attack were thwarted by De La Salle infringements. Brady Rush was unlucky not to score after a quick tap. Eventually, De La Salle broke through at the opposite end to go 5-0 up at half time. Forwards Coach, Brad Emslie, would have to be happy with the line-outs as locks Harry Forbes and Jackson Tu’inukuafe secured quick, clean ball. While De La Salle used their weight advantage in the scrums, the Westlake forwards performed extremely well at the breakdown.
With time running out, Westlake found themselves 10-0 down but responded with an amazing period of relentless attack on the try line. Flynn Willemse dived over, only to be ruled held up in goal. Blake de Nys had yet another crack at the line. De la Salle made a quick run with the ball until loosehead Ben Mitchell stole it back. After several more pick and goes, half back Jackson Ephraims spun the ball out to Brady Rush who slipped an inside ball to send Finau Paea diving over the line for a try. Casey Smith slotted the conversion taking the final score to 7-10.
2nd XV win the 1B Championship
On Saturday 27th August, the Westlake 2nd XV played Mahurangi 1st XV at North Harbour Stadium in the final of the 1B First XV Division. For the 7th form boys in both sides this would be the final time they played for their respective schools and both teams wanted to end the season on a high.
The first half was a nail biter with strong defence by both sides resulting in nil all at the break. Going into the second half Mahurangi twice threatened with runaways by their speedsters. On the first occasion No 14 Tiennan Costley was left to make the try saving tackle, while No 7 Ben Mitchell scrambled in defence and won the turn-over ball stopping the attack in its tracks. Later it was No.6 Ollie Watts who sprinted across in a superb cover tackle into touch saving the day. Unfortunately Westlake conceded a penalty and a quick tap caught the defence off guard resulting in a converted try.
Several times this season, this team has had to fight back from behind and this experience served them well. Westlake’s first points came from a relentless attack on the line which eventually saw No 3 Flynn Willemse charge over for a Try. Strong winds made kicking difficult and the try went unconverted, leaving Westlake trailing 5-7. The players were probably more composed than the supporters on the sideline who where growing more nervous by the minute. With time all but up on the clock, Westlake desperately needed to score and needed to retain possession to keep the game alive. That they did, with an unrelenting onslaught, phase after phase. Eventually No 15 Jarrod Ferguson charged his way through with No 8 Ryo Ozaki in support. The try was awarded and with it the Championship! Congratulations to the whole squad, who made their coaches Mr Hamish McKerrow and Mr Will Gage-Brown proud.
MATCH REPORT Saturday 27 August 2016
1st XV vs Mount Albert Grammar School
The following quote from the SKY Sport College Rugby Facebook page was all that was needed to motivate our team to arguably one of their best performances of the season.
” Both sides only lost one competition game in 2016, but despite Westlake achieving their biggest win in the North Harbour final in a decade it’s hard to see them getting close to MAGS…….The sheer size of the MAGS pack will be tough for Westlake to contain.”
A brilliant individual effort from Arikitoia Hood-Kaitapu opened the scoring midway through the first half. Ariki received a pass from Fine Inisi after Jack Heighton had created an overlap on the outside. Ariki then side stepped his wing and ran the 45 metres to score in the corner. The kick was unsuccessful into the strong wind. MAGS replied soon after with a try to level the scores before the break.
After the break Westlake were put under pressure and in this period of 15 minutes, MAGS added to their score with a try and a penalty to lead 13 – 5. Westlake were not done and Keepa Wiki kicked a penalty to close the gap. Jacob Katipa then broke the line and set up a possible try but the MAGS defence turned over the ball. The attacks were relentless by both sides using different tactics. MAGS used their big forward pack to make ground while Jack Heighton was comfortable putting the ball behind the MAGS backs to keep them pinned in their own half. Keepa Wiki had a chance to kick another penalty but pushed the ball wide. Westlake finished stronger but we were unable to get across the line again.
No-one but the team themselves believed that it would be so close and the boys left everything on the field. The defensive effort was monumental and while Westlake may have had less possession at the end of the game, they managed at times to stretch MAGS.
Scoreboard: Mt Albert Grammar School 13 – Westlake 8 (Half time 5 – 5)
Tries: Arikitoia Hood-Kaitapu
Penalty: Keepa Wiki
|1st XV||Mt Albert Grammar School||Lost 8-13||Blues Runner up|
|2nd XV||Mahurangi||Won 10-7||CHAMPIONS||A-Final|
|5A||Massey High||Won 31-0||CHAMPIONS||A-Final|
|6A||Rosmini A||Lost 7-17||Runners Up||A-Final|
|7 Red||Rosmini A||Won 17-5||CHAMPIONS||A-Final|