WaiBop Federation League teams Ngongotaha, Whakatane Town and Otumoetai kept their dreams of Chatham Cup glory alive with exciting wins against Northern Football League opposition while for Taupo, Old Blues, Claudelands Rovers and Rotorua United the dream is over for another year.
At Stembridge Rd, Ngongotaha started well against Western Springs but it was the visitors who took the lead in the 30th minute when slack defending gave their striker a free header which gave the keeper no chance. They held the lead at the break but the Villagers continued to play with control and composure. Ten minutes after the restart the home side were awarded a penalty, which captain Isaac Haua coolly converted.
Western Springs threatened on the break but Ngongotaha had the better of the game and a header from Neil Slater gave them a deserved 2-1 lead in the 70th minute. When the final whistle blew, arms were raised in triumph and the home supporters acknowledged their team's performance.
"It was a great team performance," laid back Ngongotaha coach Shane said after the game.
Whakatane Town remain unbeaten at Rex Morpeth Park this season after a nail-biting 3-2 win over Northern Football League side Matamata Swifts. Whakatane stunned the visitors with first half goals to Jay Winter and Wayde Maloney and went 3-0 ahead when Matt Jensen scored early in the second half. With nothing to loose Swifts took the game to Whakatane and were rewarded with two goals to set up a thrilling last 20 minutes. The home team defence held strong to record a 3-2 win.
Otumoetai were behind early against Albany and with home advantage the Northern division one side were odds on to win comfortably. But in the true tradition of cup football, Otumoetai battled back and Matt Fisher silenced the home crowd when he scored in the 75th minute.
It was all level after 90 minutes and 30 minutes extra-time.
With the help of the woodwork and a great save by Graeme Blisset, Otumoetai prevailed 4-2 in the penalty shootout.
Taupo coach Paul Drake was not too down hearted after they lost 3-2 to Papakura.
"We had our chances but after going 3-0 down in the first half it was always going to be a tough ask, and playing the second half with 10 men didn't help." Dave Stewart and Chris Roberts scored for Taupo.
It was a scoreless first half in the Ranui Swanson-Rotorua United clash but in the second half United, who were missing three key players, succumbed to the pressure and conceded three goals.
Old Blues coach Andy Legget took a young side to Manukau.
"Our focus this year is on the Federation League, so it was a good opportunity to give some youngsters some experience."
Old Blues held Manukau to 0-0 for 70 minutes but conceded three goals in short time to end their cup run. Andy Cooper was the goalscorer for Old Blues with 3-1 the final result.
In division one, Melville United beat Tauranga Boys' College 6-2, while AFC Fury were untroubled to beat Otorohanga 4-0.
In division two, Tauranga City demolished Matamata 11-0, Clube Algeria defeated Rotorua United 2-0 and it was a 2-2 draw between Katikati and West Hamilton.