There was a period in Saturday's Super 8 First XV clash when Tauranga Boys' College looked in charge against Rotorua Boys' High School.
But sadly for Tauranga, that period lasted just the opening five minutes of the televised match at Nicholson Field before Rotorua won easily 34-14.
The opening exchanges were certainly promising for the smaller Tauranga side but over-enthusiasm cost them dearly as a try went begging and then an easy penalty miss deflated any momentum.
All week, Tauranga coaches Dan Goodwin and Richard Apanui had stressed how important it was to not kick the ball down the throat of Fijian flyer Selesitino Ravutaumada, arguably the best-attacking fullback in First XV rugby in New Zealand.
But somehow the message got lost.
Goodwin was frustrated they played to Rotorua's attacking strengths.
"You know the game plan was not to kick to them but to kick out. When you can't execute those things it creates a lot of pressure and they are good players with a lot of speed," he said.
Fullback Ravutaumada found space to send left winger Manu Akauola in for the opening try which Cassius Manu converted. Tauranga then mucked up the kickoff and the two attacking threats combined again with Akauola finishing brilliantly in the corner.
Just before halftime, hooker Bernie Hati dived over for a good forwards try to give Rotorua a comfortable 17-0 lead.
It was a different Tauranga side that began the second half. Openside flanker Veveni Lasaqa made a strong run into Rotorua territory to begin some good phase play.
From an attacking scrum five metres out, it was Lasaqa who charged over under the posts to get his team back in the game.
But another searing break from fullback Ravutaumada cut the Tauranga defence to ribbons to set up more front-foot ball that led to a try to halfback Manu Paea.
When hooker Hati scored his second from a pushover lineout move, the game was all but over at 27-7. But Tauranga, to their credit, never gave up and scored a converted try to first five-eighth Izahn Le Comte to close the deficit to 13 points.
Then one final aimless kick down the middle of the park into Ravutaumada's arms gave the lightning-quick athlete the space he needed to score near the posts with the conversion ending the scoring.
Rotorua head coach Ngarimu Simpkins was happy with the thought process of his players.
"They had clarity and the execution was good at times so I am really pleased with the way they are thinking about what to do in the right parts of the field," he says.
"A turning point for me was when we started to get a little dominance up front in our set piece so I thought that really helped us just have more time with the ball."
His opposite Goodwin rued the chances that went begging early on that would have given his side the confidence boost they needed.
"You have got to take your opportunities right from the start and if we did score and capitalise early it could have easily been a different game.
"I thought our openside flanker Veveni Lasaqa had a really good game. He didn't stop working hard and tackling all day and (captain) Shi Jie Yong did a good job moving (from midfield) into No 8."