17s National Youth Tournament Final
Puketawhero Park, Rotorua
Akarana 30 Counties 26
Applying early pressure on attack must have been the game plan for Akarana who sent a strong message to their opposition from the get go.
A cross field kick from Akarana had their no.2 winger Asoleilei score in the left corner in the first few minutes, a tricky conversion scored by their half to take the score to 6-0 in the opening minutes.
The classy stepping game of Counties’ Paea Fotu had him dodge three players from Akarana on his way to the left hand corner where he levelled the scoreboard after another difficult conversion, this time from the South Aucklanders.
With increasing momentum, the boys in red were back near the try-line, a slick offload sending Counties across the line again for their second four pointer – score 10-6.
Then came another beauty cross field kick from Akarana which sat up just in time for their winger to score in a similar fashion to his first of the match, a successful conversion sending Akarana out to a 12-10 lead.
Counties replied with a try of their own under the posts minutes later regaining the lead with the scoreboard reading 16-12. That was backed up by another try shortly after as the teams headed into halftime, Counties up 22-12.
The second half started much like the first, with a bit of Akarana flare in the shape of two tries in several minutes successfully converted to put the boys in blue out in front, 24-22.
A kick chase from Akarana had spectators on the edge of their seats, catching Counties off guard slapping another six points on the scoreboard after yet another successful conversion, 30-22.
The exemplary defence of Akarana was held on their own line for almost eight minutes before Counties’ countless attempts at crossing the line were shut down.
Counties were then faced with a ‘must score’ set in the dying minutes of the game which they delivered on scoring in the right hand corner, score 30-26. One final miracle was needed if they were going to score in the final minute to overtake Akarana. But back-to-back title wins were not to be for Counties, Akarana enjoying a sweet 30-26 victory taking home the 2018 17s National Youth Tournament title.
Man of the Match – Jyris Glamuzina
Aso FRETTON AKARANA
Naufahu WHYTE AKARANA
TJ DEVERY AKARANA
Jyris GLAMUZINA AKARANA
Moala GRAHAM-TAUFA AKARANA
Tyson CHASE CENTRAL
Semisi SIKEI COUNTIES
Sione MOALA COUNTIES
Feao TONGIA COUNTIES
Paea FOTU COUNTIES
Caius FA’ATILI SOUTHERN
Griffen NEAME SOUTHERN
Okustino LUI VULCANS
Konrad TU’UA VULCANS
Sean FIELD WAI-COA-BAY
Maui WALLACE WELLINGTON
Dallas McEWAN WELLINGTON
Akarana 30 Counties 22
Southern 16 Auckland Vulcans 26
Wellington 14 Wai-Coa-Bay 25
Central 26 Northern 14
15s National Youth Tournament Final
Auckland Vulcans 16 South Island Scorpions 14
A firing Auckland Vulcans won the best start with hesitation killing the South Islanders in their first try attempt forced by the pressure of the Vulcans’ defence.
The Vulcans reaped the rewards for their majority possession drawing first blood with a four-pointer along the right side minutes later.
After a back and forth battle, the Aucklanders came up with another four points although unsuccessfully converted hitting the sheds up by 10-0 at halftime.
Back into the second 25 minute half, a line drop out kicked into touch by the Vulcans had the Scorpions in with another chance opting for a penalty goal to take the score to 10-2.
A run from Scorpions prop Jaedon Wellington had the boys in black and white cross for their first try, the scoreline taken to 10-8 after a successful conversion. It was starting to look like the Scorpions had a plan up their sleeve. The Auckland Vulcans then gave their opposition the helping hand they needed kicking the ball out on the full from the restart.
Perpetual motion saw the Scorpions tempo rise, their momentum being too much for the Vulcans who let in their second try in five minutes, 10-12 to the Scorpions. A 100 percent kicking rate from the Scorpions pushed the scoreline out to 10-14.
With seven and a half minutes on the clock, the Vulcans looked dangerous with ball in hand, capitalizing on the tired Scorpions defence scoring just left of the post locking up the scores at 14-all – the boot of Michael Taufa putting the Vulcans in front by two once again (16-14).
The Scorpions needed a miracle in their last set and a last minute try looked possible with an explosive run down the left wing from the Scorpions. But the fairytale ending wasn’t to be, the Vulcans taking home the 15s National Youth Tournament title with a 16-14 win.
Player of the Tournament – Stanley Iongi
Man of the Match – Stanley Iongi
Paaua PAPUNI-ABBOTT AKARANA
Arama KITE CENTRAL
Ali LEIATAUA COUNTIES
Kevan THOMPSON-CAMPBELL COUNTIES
Francis MANULELEUA COUNTIES
Ben PENI COUNTIES
Jaedon WELLINGTON SOUTHERN
Uriah TULI SOUTHERN
Felix FA’ATILI SOUTHERN
Jack CAMPBELL SOUTHERN
Nathaniel CAMA VULCANS
Filipo WHITEHOUSE-OPETAIA TOVIO VULCANS
Stanley IONGI VULCANS
Heneli LUANI VULCANS
Tome POONA WAI-COA-BAY
Manaia NGATAKI-MATTHEWS WAI-COA-BAY
Joshua WILLIAMS WELLINGTON
The Akarana Falcons 15s have begun their national title defence strongly with a commanding 60-4 victory over the Wellington Orcas today. Taylor Raj and Naisa Pahulu scoring two tries each in the one-sided result. They’ll be keeping a close eye on their Pool A rivals Counties Manukau, who ran up an impressive 46-0 victory over the Central Vipers.
In Pool B, The Auckland Vulcans were too good for the Northern Swords winning 40-12, with the South Island Scorpions outplaying Wai-Coa-Bay 30-18. Uriah Tuli scored a double for the Scorpions, who face the Vulcans at midday tomorrow. Wai-Coa-Bay and Northland will both be seeking their first win against each other in the other Pool B match on Tuesday.
In the 17s grade, 2017 champions Counties Manukau came from behind to beat Wellington 26-14. NZ 16s representative players Sione Moala and Taniela Otukolo were standouts for the Stingrays, with Orcas halfback Dallas McEwan performing admirably despite the final result. The Akarana 17s started their campaign well with a 46-0 victory over the Northern Swords; centres Naufahu Whyte and Samuel Kamu both crossing the line for the Falcons.
The South Island Scorpions marched to an important 28-20 victory over the Central Vipers. Griffin Neame and Caius Fa’atili standouts for the southerners, who survived a late charge lead by Tyson Chase and Tyrese Ratahi. The Auckland Vulcans were too good for Wai-Coa-Bay, running out 26-12 victors. Despite being behind at half-time, the Vulcans managed to get around the outside of the local side, with backs Okusitino Lui and L’ia Julius Lafaele bagging doubles for the Aucklanders.
The Vulcans head into a blockbuster match tomorrow with Counties-Manukau Stingrays; with Wai-Coa-Bay facing Wellington in the other match in Pool C. In Pool D, Akarana Falcons take on the Central Vipers, and South Island Scorpions playing the Northern Swords.
Results Monday 1 October:
Counties Manukau Stingrays 26 (Soakai Taufa, Taniela Otukolo, Feao Tongia, Albert Talakai, Tyrone Waipouri; Sione Moala 3 goals) Wellington Orcas 14 (Blaine Betham-Ta’ape, Maui Wallace; Stanley Fiso 3 goals)
Auckland Vulcans 26 (Okusitino Lui 2, L’ia Julius Lafaele 2, Ativalu Lisati; Konrad Tu’ua 4 goals) Wai-Coa-Bay Colts 12 (Sean Field, Ben Fosita; Ceiza James 2 goals)
Akarana Falcons 46 (Naufahu Whyte 2, Seeti Kuresa, Samuel Kamu, Lani Graham-Taufa, TJ Devery, Timothy Vogel, Totive Junior Tuilesu; Samuel Kamu 3 goals, Seeti Kuresa 1 goal, TJ Devery 1 goal) Northern Swords 0
South Island Scorpions 28 (Griffin Neame 2, Sincere Harraway, Leo Petelo, Caius Fa’atili, Jordan Aldridge; Caius Fa’atili 2 goals) Central Vipers 20 (Zamayo Lilo-Mariu, Potene Rolls-Paewai, Hiraka Wanakore, Tyson Chase; Tyrese Ratahi 1 goal, Potene Rolls-Paewai 1 goal)
Akarana Falcons 60 (Taylor Raj 2, Naisa Pahulu 2, Ethan Moughan, Tony Tafa, Benaiah Ioelu, Geneva Tuitupou, Louis Dehar-Webster, Deine Mariner; Sebastyan Jack 4 goals, Keano Kini 4 goals) Wellington Orcas 4 (Joshua Williams)
Counties-Manukau Stingrays 46 (Kavan Thompson-Campbell 2, Carlos Tarawhiti 2, Brayden Easthope-Seu 2; Nui-Alinghi Peni, Ali Leiataua, Nathaniel Skelton; Francis Manuleleua 5 goals) Central Vipers 0
Auckland Vulcans 40 (Nathaniel Cama, Filipo Whitehouse-Opetaia Tovio, Charlie Leaumoana, Michael Angelo Taufa, Stanley Iongi, Heneli Luani, Sione Vaihu, Sioeli Fa’anunu; Tremein Campbell 4 goals) Northern Swords 12 (Jarvaiyas Mangu, Robin Herbert, Haiapai Leef)
South Island Scorpions 30 (Uriah Tuli 2, Unalato Uasi, Ethan Faitaua, Jaedon Wellington; Matthew Logopati 4 goals, Riley Pascoe 1 goal) Wai-Coa-Bay Colts 18 (Manaia Ngataki-Matthews 2, Te Whatiki Childs-Katene; Tome Poona 3 goals)
Last year’s 17s National Youth Tournament winners the Counties Manukau Stingrays and 15s National Youth Tournament winners the Akarana Falcons who beat the Auckland Vulcans in a Golden Point thriller, will take on the Wellington Orcas in their respective age groups (15s & 17s) in the opening matches of the 2018 National Youth Tournament on Monday, October 1 at Puketawhero Park in Rotorua.
Both Auckland-based Zones have dominated the age-group event over the years and again held the upper hand last year, in both the 15s and 17s competitions.
Teams from Wellington, Auckland, Mid-Central, Upper Central, South Island and Northern Zones will compete for the 2018 15s and 17s National Youth Tournament titles, October 1-5 at Puketawhero Park, Rotorua.
Both finals (15s and 17s) will be livestreamed on the @NZLeague Facebook page.
Click here for to view the draw.
National Youth Tournament – 15s & 17s
National Youth Tournament Final – 17s
Counties Manukau Stingrays v Akarana Falcons
2.30pm Friday 6 October
Counties Manukau Stingrays have ended the Akarana Falcons three year reign as 17s National Youth Tournament winners.
Counties Manukau 26 (Penehuro Richard Toai, Paea Fotu, Tyrin Ona-Murphy, Daylee Dutton, Tevita Mikaele, Etuale Lui-Toeava tries; Tevita Mikaele 4 goals ) Akarana Falcons 18 (Caleb Pese, Matagi-Blade Kamulemu tries; Regan McClennan 2 goals)
17s National Youth Tournament Merit Team:
17s National Youth Tournament Awards:
17s Manager of Tournament: Junie Shelford – Northern Swords
17s Trainer of Tournament: John Taula – Central Vipers
17s Coach of Tournament: Tusa Lefale – Counties Manukau Stingrays
17s Fairplay Team of the Tournament: Northern Swords
17s Player of the Tournament: Semisi Tapa – Auckland Vulcans
National Youth Tournament Final – 15s
Akarana Falcons v Auckland Vulcans
12.30pm Friday 6 October
Akarana Falcons may be the top team from the Akarana zone but the Auckland Vulcans development team weren’t afraid to step up to the mark. It wasn’t till golden point extra time when the Falcons scored a victorious try that had them crowned the 15s National Youth Tournament winners.
Auckland Vulcans 8 (Dominic Elliot tries; Sefa Roache goals; Sefa Roache penalty goal) Akarana Falcons 10 (Sione Tapuosi 2 tries; T.J. Devery penalty goal)
15s National Youth Tournament Awards:
15s Manager of Tournament: Dan Pinn – Akarana
15s Trainer of Tournament: John Hansen – Akarana
15s Coach of Tournament: Daniel McEwen – Wellington
15s Fairplay Team of the Tournament: Northern Swords
15s Player of the Tournament: Benjamin Kosi – Auckland Vulcans
15s Merit Team: