Success in the Baywide Rugby competition takes a marathon effort, not a sprint. Nobody remembers where you finished in round one, as long you make the top eight and qualify for Premier 1.
In that sense Tauranga Sports have timed their run well so far, a 20-12 win over Mount Maunganui in the battle of the bridge on Saturday marked their second successive victory to start phase two of the competition.
While Tauranga finished sixth in round one, with six wins and three losses, a 34-10 win over previously unbeaten Te Puke suggested they were finding form. A hard-fought win in a fiery encounter with rivals Mount Maunganui confirmed it.
Tauranga coach John Dodd said he was proud of his side's performance on Saturday.
"Conditions were tough, very soft, muddy ground and it was always going to be a tough battle. Mounties are a good side, they're never going to go away so I was very proud of the boys' efforts, they showed a lot of heart today."
There were multiple occasions during the match in which scuffles broke out and tempers threatened to boil over but Dodd was pleased to see nobody lost their heads.
"We've got an awesome bunch of boys this year, they're playing for each other, it's obvious and I guess if anything goes down they've got each others' backs out there. I'm glad there were no cards, I think [the referee] managed that quite well, he did a good job."
He was well aware of how important it is to peak at the right time in what is a long season.
"The boys are working hard, I know it's a cliche but we've focused this year more on building through the year, rather than starting with a hiss and a roar. We've got a great bunch of guys who want to be at the club, our culture this year is really good.
"We're happy with how we're building but we know it's only going to get harder. I think we can still be more clinical, we still let opportunities slip on attack. That's been our Achilles heal this year, getting into the 22m and not coming away with points."
Match Report: Tauranga earn bragging rights
Tauranga's forward pack produced a powerful performance in the win over Mount Maunganui.
"They're building nicely too, we've got a couple of guys back who have been away and a couple of injured guys returning so the forward pack's building nicely. The big focus today was to be physical and we knew that if we played to our potential we had the dominant forward pack," Dodd said.
Meanwhile, although it is early in the Premier 1 competition, Mount Maunganui are facing an uphill battle after losses to Te Puna and Tauranga. Their coach Reuben Parkinson was disappointed but took some positives from the loss.
"For me, it was really encouraging, we showed some improvement on last week. It's still really disappointing to lose, we've put some pressure on ourselves and now we have to get some wins."
With no bonus points on offer this year, picking up wins is more crucial than ever. Coming close is no longer good enough.
"It's a good thing and a bad thing, when you could pick some bonus points it was good, but we're alright, I'm happy with the boys, we're heading in the right direction and that's the main thing.
"Our set piece was a lot better, we put a lot more phases together and that's important. When we do put phases together we're a threatening team so from my point of view that was really good to see."
Parkinson said this year's Premier 1 competition was as competitive as ever.
"That's the most exciting thing, anyone can beat anyone. That's good, a competition like that where you don't know who's going to win is great, it keeps all the teams, coaches and players on their toes. You have to be at your best every week, there's no easy games."
Next week, Mount Maunganui host Rangataua and Tauranga travel to Greerton.
Baywide Club Rugby Results
Te Puna 57 Rangataua 8, Te Puke Sports 52 Whakarewarewa 11, Greerton Marist 46 Rangiuru 13, Mount Maunganui 12 Tauranga Sports 20.
Premier 1 Development:
Te Puna 63 Rangataua 5, Te Puke Sports 51 Whakarewarewa 7, Greerton Marist 25 Rangiuru 5, Mount Maunganui 39 Tauranga Sports 34.
Te Teko 38 Ruatoki 28, Waikite 14 Marist St Michael's 19, Arataki 13 Ngongotahā 13, Ōpōtiki 38 Kahukura 10.
Premier 2 Development:
Te Teko 29 Ruatoki 0, Waikite 5 Marist St Michael's 34, Arataki 10 Ngongotahā 29, Ōpōtiki 19 Kahukura 12.
Poroporo 10 Judea 27, Pāpāmoa 7 Whakatāne Marist 41, Reporoa 30 Murupara 22, Rotoiti vs Paroa (win).
Ngongotahā 12 Tauranga Sports 17, Te Puna 16 Matakana 22, Greerton Marist - BYE.