Season on the line for Mounties

Mount Maunganui lock Nicholas Ross on the charge against Greerton Marist. Photo: Chris James.

It was a result that changed the likely make-up of the top four in the Farmlands Co-operative Baywide Premier 1 competition.

At Greerton Park last Saturday, a mostly inexperienced Mount Maunganui Sports team was put under extreme pressure from a dominant Greerton Marist side.

Even down a player cooling his heels in the sin bin, the Mounties showed plenty of courage as they held out for a vital 21-15 win that moved them into the top four.

Tomorrow the final round robin games kick off with the defending champions in fourth place on 15 points and trailing Te Puke Sports (29), Te Puna (21) and Tauranga Sports (20).

Mount Maunganui are home at Blake Park against Rangataua Sports, in what coach Reuben Parkinson says is an obvious must-win match for his team.

“We have to win to make the semi-finals,” says Reuben. “That’s it in a nutshell. It is our season on the line, so we have to throw everything at them and see what happens.”

Parkinson was proud of how his team fronted up against a rampant Greerton side for long phases of play.

“Something we have really been working on is our defence. It can be frustrating though, because when our boys stay in system we are really good, but when they get out of our system and try to put on big shots it can make it really hard on each other.

“We only had five players (against Greerton) from the final last year, so we have a massive amount of young players coming through. It is encouraging to see they are standing up in these big games. It is good for them.”

The other results last round saw Te Puna defeat Whakarewarewa 41-24, Tauranga Sports beat Rangataua 42-24 and Te Puke easily accounted for Rotoiti 64-21.

First round winners Te Puna will make the Baywide play-offs for the first time if they beat bottom team Rotoiti tomorrow. Te Puke, who have a home semi-final booked, host Greerton with Tauranga Sports and Whakarewarewa to clash at Tauranga Domain.

Semi-finals will be played on July 21, with the grand final on July 28.

Baywide Premier 1 draw

Saturday, 2.45pm kick-off

Tauranga Sports v Whakarewarewa, Tauranga Domain

Te Puke Sports v Greerton Marist, Murray Salt Stadium

Mount Maunganui Sports v Rangataua Sports, Blake Park

Te Puna v Rotoiti, Maramatanga Park


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