OUT WIDE: Poroporo rugby player Dylan Maui sends the ball on attack with Leighton Thrupp in support against Paroa. Photos John Morin D8298-193

IN Baywide premier rugby, Te Teko had a closely fought match against Rotoiti at Dunderdale Park in Te Teko.

Up by 14 points at one stage, Te Teko couldn’t withhold the Rotoiti attack and although they looked the better team for much of the game, couldn’t capitalise on a late attacking period.

Te Teko premier coach Anthony Studer said, “We were hammering on their line for the last 15 minutes of the game but lacked a bit of patience to convert to points.”

Studer said there were positives that their young line-up would definitely learn from.

“With nine of the boys still under 19, it’s probably the youngest team Te Teko has ever fielded but it does look good for us in the longer term.”

Studer said this season was about giving younger players experience at premier level so they “could learn to close out the game when we are ahead on the scoreboard”.

Two players of note for Studer were Chris Hemi, an 18-year-old who has previously played for Wairarapa Bush, and Jardyn Tamati, who is fresh out of Palmerston North Boys’ High School and yet to turn 18.

This week, Studer envisages another “ding dong match as they’ve had in the past” against Rangiuru away.

Meanwhile, Whakarewarewa premiers were too strong for Opotiki premiers, beating the home side 53-10.

In the development grade, both Eastern Bay clubs won, with Te Teko beating Rotoiti 32-22 and Opotiki beating Whakarewarewa 17-7.

In Baywide division one matches involving Eastern Bay teams, Ruatoki put in a good performance in their away game to beat Papamoa 26-8 and Whakatane Marist were soundly beaten by Marist St Michaels 54-0 in Rotorua. Murupara triumphed over Judea, winning 34-7.

Playing at Lawson Park, Paroa beat Poroporo 50-6, running in seven tries.
Rob Tai kicked six conversions and a penalty.

Paroa coach Rikki Horlock said the forwards set the platform for their team from the first scrum, which set the scene for a good platform for the backs.

Overall, Horlock credited the “forwards for laying the platform” and said “stand-out players for Paroa were captain Jamie Porter who led well, and also player of the day Sam Hemopo, who did a great job at the back”.

Horlock said there were areas the team needed to work on and that they would address in the coming weeks ahead.

“We’ll be looking to sharpen areas this weekend against Papamoa and the weeks after where we meet top division one teams Marist St Michaels and then Waikite the week after.”