The semi finals of the Auckland Secondary Schools Premier basketball competition were held at North Shore Events Centre on Friday night. The North Harbour teams dominated their opponents from south of the bridge to set up Westlake v Rangitoto College finals in both the boys and the girls grades.
In the girls competition favourites Westlake Girls High School trailed Mt Albert Grammar School 18-17 at quarter time as Sharne KP reeled off the first ten points for MAGS.
More composure from Westlake aided by a couple of threes from Tiarna Clarke, back from international duty, helped them establish a 44-34 advantage.
Even without centre Katelyn Noyer Westlake were able to underline their status as the number one ranked team in Auckland. The lead increased steadily in the third quarter with Zara Jillings and Rosie Davison taking charge as Westlake established a 66-45 advantage eventually going on to win 86-64.
Westlake 86 – Jillings 21, Georgia Perrott-Hunt 16, Clarke 11, Olivia Bell 10.
Mt Albert 64 – Sharne KP 21, Rhiannon Potu 12, Moanakah Vaai 9
The second semi final featured Rangitoto College and Auckland Girls Grammar School who had beaten Rangi by 14 points the last time the two teams had met. On this occasion Rangitoto were much too strong for AGGS winning every quarter to ease to a resounding 87-47 victory.
Tabatha Jenkins had 11 first half points to help Rangitoto to a 44-28 lead at the interval. Elianna Tuaiti was the only consistent threat for Grammar but the all round scoring ability of the Angela Perrott-Hunt coached Rangitoto was too much for their cross city rivals.
Rangitoto 87 – Rebecca Hughes 19, Coola Baudry 15, Annaline Crosbie 13, Jenkins 11
Auckland Grammar – Tuaiti 20, Tyla Tuala 7
One of the boys semi-finals also pitched Rangitoto against Grammar and that was a much closer affair as Auckland Boys kept pace with their more fancied opponents until late in the third period before going down 87-70, a scoreline that didn’t do justice too the AGS effort.
Tai Wynyard, back from Tall Blacks duty was making his first appearance of the term for Rangitoto and scored from the tip off.
However Grammar caused Rangi plenty of problems with some disruptive defence and neat offence highlighted by good work from Taki Farensohn who had 13 points by half time. That almost cancelled out Wynyard’s 15 points as AGS led 43-39 at the main break.
The third spell was nip and tuck as both teams wrestled for domination. A steal and a dunk from Brayden Inger after previous good work from Isaac Davidson gave Rangitoto a 63-58 three-quarter-time advantage.
Samson Aruwa and Farensohn kept the scoreboard ticking over for Grammar but the all round scoring capability of Rangi and the defensive prowess of Wynyard, Fotu and Inger allowed them to close out the game, 87-70.
Rangitoto College 87 – Wynyard 31p/15r, Davidson 25p/5a, Inger 11p
Auckland Grammar 70 – Farensohn 21, Samson Aruwa 20
The second boys semi-final went, as expected, the way of Westlake Boys who comfortably beat Onehunga High on the back of 61 points from the hot hands of Isaac Letoa and Matt Freeman.
Letoa had a dozen points in the opening quarter including a pair of threes as Westlake eased to a 32-17 advantage.
The outstanding Lesae Coe attempted to rally Onehunga in the second quarter and former Westlake student Keejon Sloan had his moments but ‘Lake’ had too much all round class with the likes of Vukets, Coffey and Logan Hunt playing fine supporting roles.
The half-time advantage of 53-37 was extended to 83-60 by three quarter time enabling Westlake coach Phil Campbell to allow his bench players extended court time in the final period.
Westlake Boys 99 – Freeman 35, Letoa 26, Vukets 11
Onehunga High 85 – Coe 20, Shem Ili 15, Denzel Puna 15.
The Finals will be played next Thursday, August 27 at North Shore Events Centre.