The NZ Heartland XV and their contingent of Wanganui rugby players rebounded from their opening game loss to comfortably beating Northland at the Jock Hobbs National Under 19 tournament in Taupo yesterday.
After being beaten 33-3 by Tasman U19 on Sunday in the second tier Sir Michael Jones Trophy division, the side still had some confidence going up against Northland U19, who had lost 58-0 to Taranaki U19 at Owen Delany Park.
And so it proved, as after leading by what is believed to be 22-14 at halftime, the Heartland XV pulled away in the second stanza for a 41-26 win.
The victory was payback for the incumbent members of the team, specifically their flanker and captain Jason Myers, who had lost 38-35 to Northland last year after they scored in the final minute.
Myer's Wanganui and Heartland Hurricanes Under 20 team mate Kohlt Coveny was at hooker, while the squad also includes King Country's Oliver Toma, a former Wanganui U16 representative and member of last year's Whanganui Collegiate 1st XV.
Heartland's final game of the tournament will be on Saturday against Counties Manukau U19, who lifted from their narrow 27-26 loss to North Harbour on Sunday by hammering Southland 81-12.
Kickoff is 12.45pm on field No 3.