The Super 8 First XV Rugby Championship comprises just seven rounds, leaving little room for error for those involved.
This weekend, the seventh and final round will be played and the competition's top two will be revealed to go straight into a final clash the following week.
The Bay of Plenty's two teams - Tauranga Boys' College and Rotorua Boys' High School are facing completely different finishes in the competition.
Rotorua's hopes of a top two finish, though being dealt a blow after a 24-29 loss to Palmerston North Boys' High School last week, remain alive.
Tauranga sit in sixth place with a win, a draw and four losses this season. Depending on other results, a win over last-placed Gisborne Boys' High School tomorrow could see them finish fifth.
Tauranga Boys' coach Dan Goodwin said, despite not getting as many wins as they wanted, there were a lot of positives to take from the season so far.
They have played the top two teams in the past fortnight, going down 29-25 to Hastings and 21-19 to Hamilton.
"We've not had a lot of wins but I think our boys have been playing some fantastic rugby. We've been within two points of Hamilton Boys', had them on the ropes a little and asked some good questions, then we were pipped by Hastings at the weekend," Goodwin says.
"As far as performance goes, I've been really proud of the boys and how they've been going."
Tauranga also drew 26-all with Napier in round three, another game that could so easily have been a win.
"The boys are learning which is really great. Some of [the results] have been pretty hard to take but the good thing is they are growing as players which is fantastic.
"The big thing for us is it's not about bouncing back, it's about learning and identifying moments where we've let things slip. They've created a belief which is something we've been missing for a couple of years, especially against some of those big teams like Hamilton, Hastings and Rotorua Boys'."
The Tauranga Boys' side will be eager to put on a good show at home this weekend with some esteemed guests in attendance.
The 1999 Tauranga Boys' College first XV, the school's only Super 8 winning team, are holding a 20-year reunion on the same day.
Meanwhile, Rotorua Boys' High School can still make the finals.
They sit in third place, four points behind Hamilton Boys' High School, so if they can beat New Plymouth Boys' at home tomorrow and Hamilton lose to first-placed Hastings Boys' High School, Rotorua can still finish second.
If Rotorua and Hamilton finish even on points, Rotorua go through as they won the head-to-head between the two sides.
Rotorua Boys' co-director of rugby Ngarimu Simpkins said his side needed to go back to basics this week.
"We've got to worry about ourselves and the game this week. If we make the final, we'll worry about that next week. After the loss last weekend, we need to get back to our core, basic jobs, do them well and get some momentum.
"We need to respect the ball a bit more in our open play, we scored some beautiful tries but just working more off the ball has been a good goal this week. Really nailing our opportunities in their 22m has been a big focus too."
He said New Plymouth were "a gutsy team".
"In the last couple of years that we've played them, they never go away, they've got good backs and forwards that get into their work. They're not a flashy side but they're a team who score points when they need to."
Simpkins was pleased with the way his side had progressed throughout the championship.
"Our set piece has been really good, our backs have shown they can score from anywhere on the field. There have been a lot of good things we've done this season, it's just about putting them all together now and having real patience."
Super 8 First XV Rugby Championship Draw - Round Seven
Palmerston North Boys' High School 27 Napier Boys' High School 15.
Tauranga Boys' College v Gisborne Boys' High School.
Rotorua Boys' High School v New Plymouth Boys' High School.
Hamilton Boys' High School v Hastings Boys' High School.