College Sport: Napier Boys' keep Hastings at bay

Napier Boys' High and Hastings Boys' High entered the division one hockey final with huge expectations.

While Napier have not lost to Hastings in more than 15 years, Hastings have produced a highly competitive side this year and in the five meetings before the final had lost twice but secured three draws.

The game certainly lived up to expectations. The pace was frenetic with the ball going from end to end. While NBHS started strongly, they failed to convert opportunities. Consequently there was a shift in momentum and HBHS poured on the pressure, feeding off Napier turnovers.

Hastings strikers Dylan Thomas and Jake Webber featured prominently but the teams were locked nil-all at halftime.

NBHS exerted more control in the second spell and in the 15th minute, Mitchell Lowe scored a goal after a goalmouth melee.

HBHS threw everything into finding an equaliser but NBHS captain Oscar Stewart and goalkeeper Dom Dixon marshalled the defence superbly to survive the onslaught.

The girls' division one final was played in a similar vein, with Napier Girls' High pipping Woodford House 1-0.

The standard was some of the best seen in girls' senior hockey this season before a vocal crowd in a game that could have gone either way.

Throughout the first half the ball moved from one end to the other with NGHS breaking the deadlock 20 minutes into the first half.

Both sides bolstered their defence in the second half with Woodford failing to find the equaliser.


From yesterday's first day of play in the national secondary schoolboys' tournament in Napier:

Pool A: King's College 4 Christchurch Boys' High 1; Wairarapa College 9 Western Heights High School 3; King's College 6 Western Heights High School 0; Wairarapa College 3 Christchurch Boys' High 2.

Pool B: Westlake Boys' High School 6 Napier Boys' High 3; Tauranga Boys' College 4 Auckland Grammar 1.

Pool C: Palmerston North Boys' High School 3 Otago Boys' High 0; Timaru Boys' High 1 Christ's College 0; Timaru Boys' High 2 Palmerston North Boys' High School 2; Christ's College 3 Otago Boys' High 1.

Pool D: Wanganui High School 2 Nelson College 0; Hamilton Boys' High 6 St Andrews' College 2.


Lindisfarne College Year 12 student Mark Phillips is the International Karate Organisation's national heavyweight 14-17 years boys champion.

Sixteen-year-old Phillips is the school's 1st XI hockey goalkeeper.

He started karate in 2006, but took a two-year break when he started at Lindisfarne and returned to the sport in 2011.

He trains under Dojohead Sensei Troy in both Hastings and Napier.

The style of karate is Kyokushin (meaning ultimate truth) and is recognised as the strongest karate in the world. The fighting style is full contact and adults 18-35 fight without protection.

Phillips had heart surgery 13 years ago, having been born with a hole in the heart and defective pulmonary valve.

The national tournament was held in Wellington and Phillips had three fights on the day. Fight 1 was against another yellow belt exponent and it ended in the first round. Fight 2 was against a black belt exponent and it was stopped midway through the second round.

Fight 3 saw Phillips compete against another black belt fighter, Jesse Pearson of Napier, who was the title holder and firm favourite. The boys often spar together and Pearson represented New Zealand in Japan earlier this year.

Both boys came to the fight with injuries; Pearson having been punched in the face in an earlier round (one of the only things you cannot do in this style of fighting) and Mark with a hand so swollen it barely fitted in his glove.

The fight went to two rounds with the judges' decision 4:1 in Phillips' favour.

A fantastic effort by both boys; first and second in Hawke's Bay can't be bad.

Phillips' next goal is to compete at the Junior World Champs in Japan next year.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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