The cold wintery showers couldn’t prevent some exhilarating rugby being played in the Thames Valley Youth Management Boards finals day last Saturday in Te Aroha. The day started with the 9th Grade Division 2, 8th Grade and 7th Grade finals all kicking off at 10am.
In the 9th Grade Division 2 final – the early start and long trek from Whitianga must have had a telling effect on the young boys from the Bay who couldn’t hold out a fired up Te Aroha team who won convincingly in the end to take home the Barry Priest Cup.
The 8th Grade was a different story with both Te Aroha and Mercury Bay battling it out until the home team scored some late tries to win 35 – 10.
Meanwhile on the number 1 field – Waihi and Thames were putting on an entertaining spectacle in the 7th grade final with referee Matthew Millward allowing play to flow from end to end. When the final whistle went it was Waihi who had continued their impressive season and gone through undefeated to claim the Roley Chaney Trophy.
11.15am came around quickly which meant the start of the 9th Grade division 1 final between Mercury Bay Gold and Te Aroha Red. Once again the travel factor may have played a part as Te Aroha scored 2 late tries to seal the deal 25 – 15 and claim the Bill Hayward Cup.
The 6th grade final was a tense affair with the unbeaten Hauraki Plains pushed all the way by a resurgent Paeroa side who were obviously up for the battle – Hauraki Plains eventually taking control of the match 36 – 17 to reclaim the Dennis Lees Trophy.
The last game of the day was the 5th Grade final between another team who had gone through the season unbeaten – Paeroa and a very focused Whangamata side with the scores locked up at 15 all till about halfway through the second half. A heavy wintry shower added to the drama however Paeroa started to exert their dominance to eventually take home the Bernie Passau Cup.
5th Grade – Bernie Passau Cup
Paeroa 32 Whangamata 15
6th Grade – Dennis Lees Trophy
Hauraki Plains 36 Paeroa 17
7th Grade – Roley Chaney Trophy
Waihi 36 Thames 12
8th Grade – Rex Holden Cup
Te Aroha 35 Mercury Bay 10
9th Grade Division 1 – Bill Hayward Cup
Te Aroha Red 25 Mercury Bay Gold 15
9th Grade Division 2 – Barry Priest Cup
Te Aroha Black 60 Mercury Bay Black 10