A number of teams were short handed in round 6 of the Auckland Secondary Schools Boys Prem competition due to New Zealand teams attending the Medibank Classic in Melbourne. In contrast Westlake Boys High School welcomed back Isaac Letoa from his trip to Kazakhstan with the NZ 3×3 Under 18 team.
Letoa showed no ill effects from the long trip scoring his team’s first three baskets as they opened up an early 8-2 lead at Rosmini College.
Rosmini replied with baskets from Nathan Curran and Taine Wattie to pull back to 8-6 five minutes in. Turnovers blighted the efforts of both teams in the period shaded by Westlake 16-15.
Reuben Fitzgerald scored three baskets in quick succession for Lake in the opening two minutes of the second period and when a third foul was called on Nathan Curran midway through the period things didn’t look so rosy for the hosts.
However Peter Jenkins stepped up admirably and with Mitchell Dance and Will Heather making triples Rosmini squeezed ahead 29-28
The lead didn’t last long as Letoa made a tough and one play in traffic, he led all scorers at the break with 17 points, Mitchell Dance the beast for Rosmini with a dozen.
Heather and Wattie were the first scores of second half before Letoa made yet another tough play.
The lead changed hands repeatedly in the third before a bench technical called on Westlake allowed Marvin Williams-Dunn a trip to the foul line to put Rozza ahead 48-44 at three-quarter time.
A Wattie triple early in the final period encouraged the raucous Faithful, the volume of support increasing for the home team with every Westlake error.
A neat Curran banked hook pushed the Rozza lead out to 56-49 prompting a Westlake time out with 4:49 left.
The breather worked as Thabo Manyere made back to back baskets; 60-53 to Rozza with 3:30 on the clock.
A Westlake press created a James Moors steal and basket but a Wattie layup kept the hosts ahead 64-56 with less than 2 minutes to play.
Ethan Martin made a neat basket but a Heather put back kept Rosmini ahead 67-58 with 1:15 to play.
Westlake were forced to foul to stop the clock availing Jordan Wilson the opportunity to calmly convert four consecutive free throws to ice the game and inflict on Westlake its first defeat of the season.
Final Score: Rosmini 71 (Dance 17, Wattie 10, Heather 10, Jenkins 8pts/9rebs, Wilson 8) Westlake 63 (Letoa 25pts/9rebs/6assists, Manyere 13/10, Fitzgerald 7)
Mt Albert Grammar School and Rangitoto College, both affected by unavailability of players fought out a close encounter on the north shore.
Michael Gardner scored 12 first quarter points for MAGS in an even first period that finished with Rangitoto 19-18 to the good. Rangi put the defensive clamps on the visitors in the second period and with Dan Fotu making 10 points in the half extended to a 35-26 lead at the main break.
MAGS outscored their hosts 16-13 in the third but couldn’t repeat the dose in the final quarter. Harrison Clarke nailed a three to open the Rangi effort in the fourth and Zac Te Puni made three consecutive baskets as they got the better of the final stanza, but only just, to record a 68-61 victory.
Kelston Boys High School demonstrated its competitiveness this season by pushing Auckland Grammar all the way only to fall to an agonising 80-82 defeat.
The bulk of the Kelston scoring was done by Kale Lawson (25pts), Sam Brooking (19pts) and Linus Jakzst (17pts).
The result of the game between Onehunga High School and Liston College is unknown at the time of posting this news.
All teams play again on Monday June 13 with the clash between Westlake and Auckland Grammar the pick of the fixtures.
Boys Standings after 6 rounds;
5-1 Westlake Boys HS, Rangitoto College
4-2 Auckland Grammar
3-3 Kelston Boys HS, Mt Albert GS, Rosmini College
0-5 Onehunga HS, Liston College