Cross country champs score at Te Aroha
The top qualifiers from the Katikati College cross country championships set off to Te Aroha on Wednesday, May 30 to compete against Thames Valley rivals.
An extremely successful day on the fast track in beautiful sunshine saw KKC come third overall (roll adjusted) for the day. The junior boys team was in great form with Daniel Nicholson winning and Sean Nicholson coming in second. And with Luke Spurr finishing sixth, Zach Arundel seventh and Thomas Swain eighth, it was a sea of green and gold in the top 10. The intermediate girls race was a cracker with Dakota Eade in her third attempt winning the gold finally, in superb time, with dark horse Madeleine Schnakenberg storming home in second in a terrific effort. Abbie Davey also had a fantastic run placing third in the senior girls. All five athletes who placed are now eligible to run in Taupo¯ at the Waikato/ BOP champs looking to qualify for NZSS Championships also in Taupo¯.
The 1st XV travelled away to Western Heights to play the last game of Round 1 in the BOP 1st XV Division 3. Thiswas finals day and the team came up against Reporoa/JPC XV which was a big strong team. Itwas an even start with both sides making good progress when they had the ball in hand. KKC showed their intentions to run the ball with Tesimoni Uilou making good metres from 1st V. Some hard tackling led to a few knock-ons but Katikati was dominant in the scrums and loosie Dallas Davis played another blinder along with Lesen Huiarangi who was everywhere. Afew penalties for high tackling gave Rep/JPC field advantage and they were the first to score after KK turned over the lineout ball to make it 0-5. The kick off was chased and pressure led to a kick down field, picked up by Uilou who scampered 60m through the opposition before being ankle tapped 2m from the line. Aquick penalty was passed out through hands and a nice try scored by Davis to make it 5-5. The team started to settle into their work and some creative passing saw Huiarangi run in a try close to the posts that Uilou converted 5-12. A technical difficulty meant KK lost a player to the bin and Rep/JPC took the chance to hit back with a try just before half time.
At the restart there was a shuffle in the team and the ball popped out to centre, Tomasi Vakasiuola who hit up good yards and then nice hands through the forwards gave the ball to speedster Amadeus Ruegg, who scored out wide and was nicely converted to bring the score to 10-19. An exciting last quarterwith good attacking from both sides, eventually No 8 Ryan Crapp putting a boot to it and Ritchie Vi showed great anticipation pouncing on the ball for another try. A last-ditch effort from Rep/JPC forced the turnover from a maul and they had the final say under the posts, but it wasn’t quite enough to win. KKC the winners by 24-17 and a promotion into Division 2. Excellent work so far in the season.
KKC 1st XI Boys took on old rivals Te Puke High School in the fifth game of the round. Having not had opportunity to play since they were defeated a year ago, KKC were eager to get out there and contest. TPHS was fielding some strike power so the defenders were well primed to try and shut them down. KKC looked dangerous from the outset though, driving forward hard and getting into the circle where Jake Hannah took his first opportunity scoring in under 30 seconds. Keeping the pressure on, more circle penetrations with Shaun Coxhead back at striker using his skills to get the first penalty corner of the match, where a welcome return for Glenn Templeton from injury and his first strike of the ball hit the back board to make it 2-0.
The goals then came fast with Hannah scoring again from close range followed by the first of a hat-trick from Lucas Brydon who smashed in three in quick succession with the half time score of 6-0 a surprise to everyone.
The second half was a disappointment with KKC unable to maintain their momentum mentally and a few positional changes leading to a lack of structure.
TPHS came out firing and scored midway through the second half.
That was the last goal and though it was a good 6-1 win, KKC needs to take a look at their second half performance and improve it.
Katikati College successful junior boys team from left, Daniel Nicholson, Sean Nicholson, Luke Spurr, Zach Arundel and Thomas Swain.
Abbie Davey pushing up the last hill to take third place in the senior girls cross country.
Dakota Eade won the senior girls Thames Valley Secondary Schools cross country easily by 150m.