Hamilton BHS remain on course for their Super 8 showdown with the high-flying and seemingly unstoppable Hastings BHS.
This follows their 29-8 victory at Tauranga BC, who lie third on the Super 8 standings. The latter offered staunch resistance, especially in a tight second spell.
Hamilton BHS have now held the Don Clarke Memorial Boot since 2010 and started with the intention of not allowing it out of their grasp through a dominant scrum and using their bigger pack to rumble it up the middle.
Though Tauranga's Cole Forbes opened the scoring with a penalty goal, Hamilton BHS hit straight back with a try from a lineout drive by captain and hooker Tane Te Aho, their first of two using this scoring method. Left wing Tre Poihipi finished a fine team try after a thrust by first five Coby Miln.
Hamilton BHS closed the first half in control at 21-3 after right wing Raven-James Paekau scored in the corner, set up by man of the match, centre Tauterangimarie Kapea.
Kapea then scored an early second stanza try, when he joined a lineout drive and ploughed over. That was unfortunate for the Tauranga pack, which was acquitting itself well in some physical exchanges. The home side's reward came when replacement hooker Dylan Williams peeled round the front of a lineout to finish a well-executed set-piece move.
Tauranga head boy Flynn Kelly, who was into everything, nearly scored himself but was concussed and then blue carded by referee Joshua Bull. Tauranga also lost another forward to the bin but proved resilient on defence, holding firm under a Hamilton assault on their line.
Elsewhere in the Super 8, Hastings BHS kept their unbeaten run intact with a 32-0 blanking of New Plymouth BHS, while Rotorua BHS won a tight, 34-33 clash against Napier BHS.
Wesley sit at the top of the Central North Island standings, though with a match in hand, after beating Francis Douglas Memorial, alma mater of the Barrett boys, 38-19. St Paul's Collegiate hammered a hapless Te Aute 76-0, while other CNI contenders Feilding HS defeated Rathkeale 55-10 and St Peter's of Cambridge were too good, 30-8, for Wanganui Collegiate.
In the Counties Manukau/Waikato premier competition, Rosehill will host Te Awamutu in this Saturday's televised clash. Last Saturday, Manurewa HS edged to the top with a 24-16 win over Cambridge HS, while St John's of Hamilton convincingly defeated Pukekohe HS 53-0.
St Pat's Silverstream lead the Wellington premiership after trouncing Rongotai 60-0, but nipping at their heels are Scots, who beat Kapiti 43-22.
The big guns are flexing their muscles in the UC Championship, with a gap opening up between the top five - Timaru BHS, Christchurch BHS, Christ's, Nelson and St Andrew's -- and the rest.
Moascar Cup holders Nelson, who beat Mid Canterbury Combined 52-3, enjoyed a good week, clinching the Quadrangular tournament for the 26th time since 1925 with a 29-5 midweek victory over UC Championship rivals Christ's. It was Nelson's 10th successful Moascar Cup defence.
Otago BHS also showed their class in a 34-12 win over Christchurch BHS in their traditional. Otago BHS are surviving off a diet of Colts rugby in the Dunedin metro competition, and so always enjoy their traditionals against schools. Their Second XV is competitive in the Otago First XV schools competition. Waitaki BHS won their famous annual 'blood match,' 29-0 over St Kevin's.
There was a round one catch-up game in Auckland's 1A competition and it produced an upset. MAGS toppled leaders St Kentigern 21-17 away from home, scoring some fine tries, including a runaway to James Strickland. MAGS have now beaten the two private schools, King's and St Kentigern, on consecutive weekends, but they may have left their run too late, lying seventh with three rounds to play.
In North Harbour, Rosmini hold third position after some patient attack, parsimonious defence and the boot of Connor Leather saw them shut out Massey 32-0. There were two tries to flanker Connor Seaman to go with singles to left wing Bryce Wainhouse and lock Devon Harris in the soggy conditions. In Thursday's QBE Festival of Rugby, leaders Westlake BHS defeated a feisty Birkenhead 38-22 and Takapuna Grammar edged Whangarei BHS 26-22.
Most competitions will resume on July 29 after school holidays. This week sees franchise Under 18 camps in the five regions.
North Harbour 1A
Westlake BHS 38 Birkenhead 22
Rangitoto 46 Orewa 8
Takapuna Grammar 26 Whangarei BHS 22
Rosmini 32 Massey HS 0
Points: Westlake BHS 54, Rangitoto 45, Rosmini 44, Takapuna Grammar 34, Massey 20, Birkenhead 12, Whangarei BHS 8, Orewa 4
MAGS 21 St Kentigern 17
Points: St Kentigern 31, Auckland Grammar 29, St Peter's 29, Sacred Heart 28, De La Salle 24, King's 23, MAGS 18, Kelston BHS 17, Dilworth 17, Aorere 9, Liston 1, Tamaki 0
St John's (Hamilton) 53 Pukekohe HS 0
James Cook HS 27 Alfriston 5
Manurewa HS 24 Cambridge HS 16
Points: Manurewa HS 25, St John's 24, Te Awamutu 21, Cambridge HS 15, Pukekohe HS, James Cook HS 12, Rosehill 4, Alfriston 2
Bay of Plenty
Bethlehem 20 John Paul 19
Western Heights HS 58 Aquinas 5
Te Whare Kura o Mauao 22 Rotorua BHS Second XV 17
Trident HS 37 Opotiki 12
Hamilton BHS 29 Tauranga BC 8
Hastings BHS 32 New Plymouth BHS 0
Rotorua BHS 34 Napier BHS 33
Palmerston North BHS 21 Gisborne BHS 3
Points: Hastings BHS, Hamilton BHS 25, Tauranga BC 16, Rotorua BHS 15, Palmerston North BHS 9, Napier BHS 8, New Plymouth BHS 6, Gisborne BHS 1
Central North Island
Wesley 38 Francis Douglas Memorial 19
St Peter's (Cambridge) 30 Wanganui Collegiate 8
Feilding HS 55 Rathkeale 10
Lindisfarne 44 St John's (Hastings) 8
St Paul's Collegiate 76 Te Aute 0
Points: Wesley 26, St Paul's Collegiate 25, Feilding HS 24, St Peter's 24, Francis Douglas Memorial 20, Lindisfarne 15, Wanganui Collegiate 13, Rathkeale 10, Te Aute 6, St John's (Hastings) 1
St Pat's (Silverstream) 60 Rongotai 0
Scots 43 Kapiti 22
Porirua 36 Hutt Valley HS 21
St. Pat's (Town) 79 Tawa 7
Points: St Pat's (Silverstream) 35, Scots 34, St Pat's (Town) 26, Wellington 20, Porirua 18, Rongotai 15, Kapiti 14, Wairarapa 8, Tawa 7, Hutt Valley HS 0
Christ's 31 Marlborough BC 21
Waimea Combined 50 Roncalli/Aoraki Combined 3
Nelson 52 Mid Canterbury Combined 3
Christchurch BHS 26 Rangiora HS 8
St Thomas 20 Shirley BHS 15
Timaru BHS 46 St Bede's 12
St Andrew's 50 Burnside HS 20
Points: Timaru BHS 45, Christchurch BHS, Christ's 44, Nelson 40, St Andrew's 37, Rangiora HS 31, Waimea Combined 30, St Thomas 27, Marlborough BC 24, Shirley BHS 21, Lincoln HS 20, St Bede's 16, Ashburton 6, Roncalli 1, Burnside HS 0
South Otago HS 27 Otago Second XV 20
King's HS 22 John McGlashan 15
Waitaki BHS 38 Mt Aspiring 8
Waitaki BHS 29 St Kevin's 0
Otago BHS 34 Christchurch BHS 12
Francis Douglas Memorial 27 St Bernard's 24
Nelson 29 Christ's 5