The Thames Valley Development team suffered a first up competition loss, going down 15-10 against Auckland Under 85s at Bell Park, Pakuranga.
It was a very close first half with the teams locked at 0-0 at half time.
Jarrod Allen-Baker broke the deadlock with a try that was converted by Stephen Wise but Auckland responded with two tries of their own, one of which was converted to take a five-point lead.
Halfback Wise kicked a penalty to bring Thames Valley within two points but Auckland added a penalty to seal a narrow win in a low scoring game.
There were two curtainraisers in Te Aroha, for the Heartland game and in the first of these, Thames Valley Under 14s played Matamata College Under 14s in an entertaining match.
Both sides moved the ball about well but the hosts showed slightly better control to take the win by 34-24.
The NZ Vikings Under 18s, from Northland, were a stern test for the Thames Valley team in the opening round of the Northern Region’s Under 18B competition with a couple of big boys in the visiting ranks however coaches Mike Voykovich, Dwayne Mansell and Howie Rota can take great pride in their Thames Valley squad as the boys recorded a pleasing 19-12 win, to make it two wins in a row in the curtain raisers.
Thames Valley Under 16s played the Matamata Corinthians at Hinuera in another warm up game before they go on tour to the East Coast this week but they will have plenty to work on after suffering a 45-5 loss in this game.
The Under 45s were in camp last weekend and finished off two days of work with a game at Waihi on Sunday, beating an Invitation Selection 60-34.
The Roller Mills were also in camp this weekend and hosted a quadrangular practice tournament at the Paeroa Domain on Sunday with the Counties and Bay of Plenty Roller Mills teams and Bay of Plenty Development RM taking part.
Thames Valley lost to Bay of Plenty 24-19, beat Bay of Plenty Development 12-7 and lost to Counties, 34-0.
Girls rugby resumed on Friday night with the third round of the Under 13 competition played at the Sports Park in Whitianga with teams from, Hauraki, Waihi and Mercury Bay taking part while the Thames Valley Under 16 girls team had their first game for the season against Matamata College Under 16s at Paeroa Domain, also on Friday night.
Matamata showed the benefit of playing in the Waikato girls competition as they won 59-20.