South­ern Cross win four straight


South­ern Cross Cam­pus are the queens of Auck­land school girl rugby, again.

The Parusi Le­malu and Rod Ratu coached side claimed their fourth straight cham­pi­onship with a hard fought 24-17 win over One­hunga High School at Wil­liams Park, Man­gere last Mon­day. The vic­tory opens the door for a crack at the na­tional ti­tle.

But first they must beat the win­ner of the match be­tween the cham­pi­ons of North­land and North Harbour for the right to rep­re­sent the Blues re­gion.

Ratu says the team owes it’s four year reign to the sys­tems and struc­tures put in place by the school’s sports de­part­ment and the con­ti­nu­ity of teach­ing and coach­ing staff.

‘‘We fo­cus pro­duc­ing ath­letes, de­vel­op­ing their skills and shap­ing their at­ti­tudes to­wards train­ing, learn­ing and self im­prove­ment. Much of what they learn be­comes trans­fer­able to the class­room.’’

Ratu says the pro­gramme is at a stage now where the 1st XV play­ers, both girls and boys, now coach Year 7 and 8 stu­dents.

‘‘The idea is to en­sure we have a whole lot of stu­dents com­ing through each year. This pro­vides for a con­ti­nu­ity of numbers and a con­sis­tency skills.’’

Ratu says the pro­gramme doesn’t dis­tin­guish be­tween girls and boys.

He says it’s con­trib­uted to the suc­cess of the girls’ 1st XV, the girls’ turbo touch team which won the Auck­land ti­tle for a second year run­ning and the boy’s rugby league team, the reign­ing New Zealand cham­pi­ons.

Prop Luti Siko­lau, first five Jaime Patuki, centre Sarah Fil­imoeatu, No. 8 Tuiala Iakopo and Idle­quinn Ta­pa­soa are tes­ta­ment to the pro­gramme’s suc­cess.

The five were among the first girls drafted into the pro­gramme. They’ve fea­tured in every cham­pi­onship win and will be shoot­ing for a fifth next year.

The full squad is: Alvin Cocker, Opo­mata­niu Feso, Faith Fil­imoeatu, Sarah Fil­imoeatu, Loreta Fraser, Tilila Hifo, Tuiala Iakopo. Lau­manu Lavulavu, Sha­niah Lui, Oloataua Magele, Paea Matangi. Tili Moli, Imeleta Oloa, Jaime Patuki, Luti Sikoloni, Idle­quinn Ta­pu­soa, Lavinia Tauha­la­liku. Ta­tianah Te­mata, Lucy Te­ofili Fi­dow, Zoya To’ofohe. Amelia Tulelei, Florida Vil­iamu Otto.

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