Wins For Auckland 16s & 18s In Southern Zone Rep Day
Auckland picked up victories in both the U18 and U16 fixtures played against a spirited visiting Southern Zone on Saturday at Mount Smart Stadium.
The Auckland U18s emerged 27-16 winners in a thrilling contest which saw the Southern Zone lead for the majority of the match, before a late points-scoring blitz got Auckland home.
Earlier in the day the Auckland U16 side proved too strong for their southern counterparts, coming away with a 62-4 victory led by an 18-point showing from standoff Cassius Tia.
It was the second year in a row Auckland and the Southern Zone have met in an end-of-season representative event.
The Southern Zone had looked set for a victory in the U18s clash, taking a 16-4 lead into the break and holding Auckland out until the final 20 minutes.
At that point the locals came alive, scoring tries via Sam McIntyre and Ben Kosi – coupled with a pair of conversions from Doux Kauhiva – to tie the game up at 16-16.
Marist flyer Sebastyan Jack then gave Auckland the lead with 18 minutes to go, racing down field to latch onto a direct kick from a scrum set on halfway.
Kauhiva converted again to put Auckland up 22-16, before the Marist playmaker kicked a field goal with two minutes to play to seal the game.
Winger Tolomanila Watts then put the icing on the cake with a try on the siren.
U16 Auckland 62 (Tre Alofa-Fotu, Taniela Mapusaua-Lotaki, Nathaniel Tangimataiti x2, Cassius Tia, Dorian Mapusaua-Lotaki x2, Caylis Tarawa Latu, Salesi Foketi, Caleb Meleisea x2, Devante Mihinui tries; Tia x7 goals) def. U16 Southern Zone 4 (Josiah Neil). At Mount Smart Stadium.
U18 Auckland 27 (Sebastyan Jack, Tolomanila Watts x2, Ben Kosi, Sam McIntyre tries; Doux Kauhiva x3 goals; Kauhiva x1 drop goal) def. U18 Southern Zone 16 (Elijah Tuahra, Unaloto Uasi, George Faiava tries; Matariri Halbert-Pere x2 goals). At Mount Smart Stadium.