The Bay of Plenty under-19 team brought the smiles back to rugby fans in the province after a thumping 90-0 win over Hawke's Bay in the quarter-finals of the Jock Hobbs Memorial National tournament in Taupo today.
After the Steamers suffered a heartbreaking 29-28 loss to Hawke's Bay on Saturday in the Mitre 10 Cup and the Volcanix women's team were beaten 44-7 by Waikato at Matata, the Bay of Plenty youngsters continued their dominating season with a 14 try demolition of the junior Magpies.
It means Bay of Plenty are guaranteed their best ever finish at the national under-19 tournament.
They now play a semifinal in the Graham Mourie Premiership division against North Harbour on Wednesday and at worst will finish fourth, one better than last year.
Coach Mike Rogers was understandably ecstatic with the result.
"The boys were awesome. They were just on, after being a bit off at training during the week."
With winger Bartje Wierenga scoring four tries, Rogers was keen to give some real kudos to his backs coach Marty Bourke.
"Last year we struggled to score tries. It's a bit different this year" says Rogers.
This latest huge win continues a sequence of high scoring victories in recent weeks.
In their seeding matches inside the Chiefs region, Bay of Plenty put 60 points on Counties-Manukau, whipped Taranaki 94-0 and scored 36 against Waikato.
So why, one might ask, have these matches been so one sided?
"The boys are just playing without fear," says Rogers.
"If a team is good enough to beat us they will, but there's obviously a whole lot of confidence there now."
Steamers coach Clayton McMillan, who was at the match in Taupo with his assistant Rodney Gibbs, confirmed that fullback Kaleb Trask will stay with the under-19s for the semifinal on Wednesday.
Trask, who has appeared for the Steamers twice this season, but who is still eligible for the under-19s - and New Zealand under-20s next year - is the most experienced player in the Bay of Plenty team at Taupo.
"We want these boys to have the best opportunity to win the tournament" says McMillan, "so I'm happy for Kaleb to stay on till Wednesday, and maybe beyond that too, depending on what happens."
North Harbour squeezed past Tasman 28-25 and will be Bay of Plenty's opposition for a place in the final.
The semifinal is on the main ground at Owen Delany Park in Taupo at 2.15 on Wednesday afternoon.