Wins for Sports, Rangiuru
The second phase of the Baywide rugby season got under way with impressive wins for both Te Puke teams.
Rangiuru got off to a fantastic start in their quest for premiergrade rugby next season with the narrowest of wins at home to Ngongotaha¯ — the best-placed of the premiership sides not to transfer into the Premier One championship after the first phase of the competition.
In dominant form in the opening game of the Baywide Premier One championship, Te Puke kept defending Baywide champions Mount Maunganui scoreless at Blake Park.
The Pirates ran in two touchdowns in the first half, before adding three further tries in the second spell to win 34-0.
Te Puke attacked the defending Baywide champions from the start of the encounter, with lock Tim Bond grabbing the first try at the nine-minute mark. At the half way point of the first half player/coach Matt Wallis finished off a forward drive to score a five-pointer. With both tries converted by Jason Robertson, who also added a penalty, the visitors had a 17-0 lead at the break.
Two tries to Te Puke Sports hooker Cheyenne Dalley in the first 20 minutes of the second half took the game away from the hosts, with Curtis Deane adding a fifth touchdown in the dying minutes of the encounter. Te Puke first-five Jason Robertson kicked three conversions and a penalty goal in the 34 point shutout.
Two tries and plenty of hard work in the tight resulted in Dalley receiving his side’s Player of the Day award.
Te Puke Sports joined firstround winners Te Puna, Whakarewarewa and Rotoiti in taking the win points on offer.
Te Puke now have three home games in a row — against Rangataua, Whakarewarewa and Te Puna. The Te Puna encounter will be the club’s annual Charity Day, with this year’s recipient Te Puke Volunteer Fire Brigade, with both the premier and development sides to wear the day’s sponsored jerseys.
Rangiuru had finished top of the Division One first-round table, and were involved in an absolute thriller with Ngongotaha¯ before taking out a knife-edge 41-40 win against the Rotorua visitors.
Rangiuru travel to po¯tiki on Saturday.
The Te Puke Sports development team, the defending Baywide champions, took their first step towards back-to-back crowns in the early action at Blake Park when posting a solid 27-17 victory.
In other local results, Pa¯pa¯moa went down to Ruatoki 30-17 in the Eastern Bay of Plenty, while Rangiuru Development team lost 35-5 to Ngongotaha¯ in their first Baywide hit-out of the season.
More photos from Te Puke’s game against Mount Maunganui on page 15.
Kane Le’aupepe looks to split the Mount Maunganui defence in Te Puke’s 34-0 win on Saturday.