A 76-0 victory for the Mt Aspiring College (MAC) 1st XV against South Otago High School was “a great confidence booster for the team,” said coach Craig Read. Last Saturday’s match in Balclutha saw the Wanaka team score 12 unanswered tries.
“We’ve played some tough games over the last three or four weeks, so it was good to see the boys get some reward for their efforts,” said Read. “They played well and stayed in structure throughout the game when it could easily have got quite loose.”
Number eight Fergus Read was first to score with two tries in quick succession. Prop Rhys Hughes found plenty of space out on the paddock and scored three tries before halftime, charging from the 10-metre line to score his hat-trick. A try to halfback Ethan Kerr brought the half time score to 38 to zero.
First five Milan Martinovich beat the defence with his trademark fancy footwork, scoring the first try of the second half before setting up an opportunity for lock Hamish Robinson to get the ball over the line. Winger Jack East found also found the holes in the defence and notched up another three tries. Halfback Ethan Kerr put the full stop on the game, outpacing the opposition with a 50m run from the base of the scrum to score the final try.
With several First XV players sidelined by injury and illness, yesterday’s game was on opportunity for Colts players Sam Teale, Otis Harry and Harry Gillespie to step up. Teale started as fullback and was impressive on defence. Year 10 student Harry and year 11 student Gillespie joined for the second half, both making valuable contributions to the team effort.
Following the school holiday break, MAC are scheduled to play St Kevin’s College at home in Wanaka on July 20 at 1pm. MAC now sit in eighth place on the round robin rankings, within the middle four bracket which they have targeted. However, they must beat St Kevin’s if they are to maintain this position before the competition splits in to top, middle and bottom four teams for the next round.