Hinuera go down fighting to Southern
Played away at Tokoroa in unusually warm conditions Hinuera went down fighting to unbeaten Southern, thus losing their unbeaten record.
Added to Hinuera’s woes were the loss to injury of front rowers Ben Whaiapu and Craig Blyde, the latter a soft tissue type only.
Facing a team that had extra height at both lock and number 8 the Gold and Blacks scrapped for every piece of possession and territory they could.
Matters looked ominous from the opening scrum when the locals pushed Hinuera off the ball. That was the first and last time they did. Perhaps against the run of play Hinuera opened the the scoring.
Bradley Leuthard, coming in from the right wing, unloaded to fullback Ryan Wilson who committed several defenders with determined leg drive, then passed to wing Joss Hedge who scored making it 5-nil.
Three southern penalties negated that advantage, 9-5 to the locals.
Hinuera pressure prior to half time from six phrases brought a penalty to Matt Ring. The half time score was 9-8 to Southern.
Two minutes into the second spell Southern scored their one and only try with a fine back move, extending their lead to 14-8. Back came Hinuera. Lead up work involving Todd Allen and a clever pass by Wilson allowed Leuthard to score in the corner, 14-13 Southern.
Several bursts by Khan Underwood Braden Coates threatened, all to no avail.
A head high tackle on Allen resulted in a sin binning and penalty that Ring goaled, 16-14 Hinuera. Final score was 20-16 to Southern. Allen was player of the day, The Bs remained unbeaten, winning 31-22.
Next week Hinuera are home to Te Awamutu Marist. and