Marist goes so close to win
The Marist Saints needed to give everything they had in their clash against Pt Chevalier Pirates for round 15 of rugby league’s Appliance Shed Fox Memorial Shield on July 6.
But at the final whistle the Saints could only manage a 28-28 draw against the second-placed Pirates.
With only four wins from 14 outings this season, the Saints travelled to Blockhouse Bay knowing that everything needed to be left out on the field if they had any hopes of grabbing the points and forcing their way into the top four.
It was the Pirates who managed to grab the opening points when captain Ian Hayes crossed and gave Jonathan Carl an easy conversion.
Further tries to Matiu Love-Henry and Saula Solomona had the Saints up 20-6 and the game was slipping away from the Saints with halftime approaching.
Fortunately Peter Savelio grabbed a four-pointer for Marist right on the hooter making it a 20-12 halftime score in favour of the Pirates.
The ideal start after the break for Saints fans had Lokeni Gavet cross to bring the scores that much closer JJ Saena continued his flawless kicking to add the extra two points and bring life back into the Saints pack.
Marist continued with their momentum and went close again when Tangi Ropati received a long ball from halfback Eddie Leavai only to be forced into touch with the try line just inches away.
Solid defence had the Saints struggle to make many metres until Lokeni Gavet broke the line and sent the ball out wide.
After a few desperate passes between the legs, Gavet found himself holding the ball again.
Lunging for the try line he grounded the ball but was deemed to have put a foot into touch and the game remained a tie.
Bottom-placed Bay Roskill Vikings were also looking to grab a valuable win over the Otahuhu Leopards.
But it wasn’t to be and the Vikings had to accept a 56-22 defeat.