The 13s had their show piece event at Toll Stadium on Sunday. It was testament to the quality of the surface at Toll Stadium that it could handle three games in one day even after the amount rain that Northland has received over the last couple of days.
13s Plate Final – A Game of Two Halves
Rugby League is definitely a game of momentum. In the first half the game was all Manaia View as they went into a seemingly unassailable 20 – 6 lead. They were well led around the park by the dominant running of loose forward Wiremu Proctor.
However, come the second half, it was a different game with the Horahora Broncos running riot to take out the game 42 – 24. Loose forward Zion O’Leary was man of the match with barnstorming run after run, laced with some slick passing.
13s Championship Grand Final – Last Minute Thriller!
In a match that both teams should be really proud to have been a part of, the Otangarei Knights and Portland Panthers put on a scintillating display of finals footy. Nothing separated the two teams throughout the duration of the match with both teams locked in at 10 points all at half time.
The second half was a seesawing affair, as teams traded try for try. Both teams showed that they were well coached by their respective coaches (Portland – Riki Shelford, Otangarei – Neville Tohu).
With the teams locked at 20 points all, with less than 1 minute left on the clock it looked certain to go to golden point until Portland Centre Riki Shelford Junior, burst through the Otangarei defence line from 10 metres out, to score under the posts. With time up on the clock the boys from Portland had snatched a classic victory.
Man of the match was Portland’s half back Te Aorewa Patira who showed everyone that size doesn’t matter on the League field. Otangarei’s Xavier Mexted also deserves a notable mention for the way he directed his team around the paddock.