The Ag Challenge Wanganui Under 16s had to settle for fourth in Pool B after a 20-12 defeat to Wairarapa-Bush in wet conditions at the HYRC tournament finals yesterday.
Wanganui were outscored four tries to two on the No3 field at the Wanganui Collegiate school grounds.
Their five pointers came from hooker Ben Strang and right winger Brandon Burberry, while first-five Tomasi Connor landed the only conversion of the game.
Wairarapa-Bush scored tries through prop Waylon Mason, lock Oliver Donaldson, centre Logan Prendeville and reserve Cody McGlashan.
"They played to their strengths and we didn't, they out-did us in the end," said Wanganui captain Sam Sherriff.
"It's been good to play on home turf, [but] a lot of pressure. We expected to do quite well."
Both the Pool A and Pool B finals on the main Collegiate grounds were Wellington vs Hawkes Bay affairs.
In the Pool B game, Wellington Development retained their title 27-17, while in the big match, Wellington won 31-19 for their third straight title victory.
Sherriff said the standard of play and ability of the teams, especially from the large players in the bigger centre sides, was very high.
"More than I expected. It's like the 1st XV competition around the country."
As a blindside flanker, Sherriff was named in the tournmament team, as was centre Faleseu Taumailoto.
Wanganui started the tournament with a 27-7 win over Horowhenua-Kapiti on Monday, but were beaten 36-5 by Wellington Development on Tuesday.