The main features of the final full round of Auckland Secondary Schools Premier Boys Grade action on Friday night was that three of the four games went to overtime and Rangitoto College wrapped up the regular season title.
Rosmini College, Kelston Boys High School and Liston College all prevailed in additional time.
Kruz Perrott-Hunt and Josh Hidalgo scored triples on the opening possessions for their respective teams as Westlake Boys High School entertained neighbours Rosmini College.
A Taine Wattie tip in gave Rosmini the lead but back to back jumpers from James Moors took Lake ahead 12-11 early on.
Ethan Martin connected with a three but Perrott-Hunt landed his second triple to help Rozza to a narrow 21-19 quarter time lead.
James Moors continued his good form with a quick 7 points in the second quarter and buckets from Hidalgo and Reuben Fitzgerald helped Lake out to a 38-33 advantage.
Moors capped an outstanding first half with a defensive block. The Westlake swingman had 22 points at the interval with his team ahead 46-39.
A Peter Jenkins drive opened the second half scoring and when Will Heather dropped a bucket four minutes later Rosmini had wrestled back the advantage with a 16-5 run.
Hidalgo and Fitzgerald reclaimed the lead only for Nathan Curran and Taine Wattie to edge the visitors back ahead 61-56 at three-quarter time.
Another run from Rozza with Marvin Williams-Dunn and Wattie sharing 12 points took them to a healthy 73-58 lead. Moors replied with a triple plus an And 1 play but Westlake needed a timeout trailing 76-64 with 4:50 to play.
Isaac Letoa capitalised on two Rozza turnovers but Jenkins and Dance took Rosmini to an 80-69 lead and apparent safety with 4 minutes left on the clock.
Letoa and Westlake thought otherwise. The Westlake captain scored his side’s next 9 points as they closed to within seven with three to play.
Moors converted a deep three – 82-76 with two minutes to play.
With 1:47 left Wattie, who had had a fine game up to that point, departed with a fifth foul. Worse still it was of the technical variety.
Moors converted the resulting free throw and Letoa sunk another freebie to draw Westlake within three, 82-79 with 1:03 to play.
Pressure defence from the hosts drew a 24 seconds violation from Rozza with 39 seconds left.
Westlake advanced the ball after a timeout and under intense defensive pressure Letoa tied the scores (82-82) with a polished long range three.
It appeared that Rosmini would have the final possession but they gifted it to Westlake with an inbounds turnover. A Letoa jump shot rimmed out and overtime ensued.
Westlake had done remarkably well to come from 15 points down in the middle of the fourth quarter but they visibly tired in overtime.
A couple of Williams-Dunn threes gave Rosmini some breathing space before Perrott-Hunt and Dance sealed a hard fought 98-89 victory.
Westlake coach Phil Campbell lamented a below average rebounding performance from his team but will look forward to the likely return of the injured Thabo Manyere for the semi-final rematch in two weeks time.
Another tight encounter is on the cards.
Final Score: Westlake 89 – Moors 37, Letoa 17, Fitzgerald 13, Hildago 12, Jenkins 13 Rosmini 98 – Wattie 23, Dance 20, Perrott-Hunt 17
In another overtime game Kelston Boys High School coach Jeff Fahrensohn gained bragging right over son Taki as Kelston beat Auckland Grammar School in a thriller 88-86.
Kelston appeared certain to win the game in regular time after stealing the ball with 14 seconds to play and holding a 73-70 advantage. Rather than keep possession and draw the likely foul Kelston opted for a layup and missed!
In a frantic close Thomas Whyte saw an attempted three hit the ring and bounce out only for Taki Fahresohn to gather an offensive rebound, dribble out and launch an off balance shot that hit nothing but net on the buzzer to tie the game at 73 apiece.
The two teams went toe for toe in overtime before Kelston and their go to man Linus Jakzst (32 points on the night) had the final possession with 12 seconds to play and the scores locked at 86 all.
With the Kelston bench counting down the seconds Jakzst made the match winning play much to the delight of the home team and supporters.
Earlier Kelston had opened an early 21-10 lead but pegged back to 37-32 by half-time. Kelston had a 57-48 buffer at the third break before AGS made their fourth quarter run.
Final Score: Kelston 88 – Jakzst 32, Matangi Prescott 23, Liam Milne 13, Kale Lawson 10 AGS 86
It was a low scoring affair at Mt Albert Grammar with the hosts going down 54-45 to Rangitoto College.
Normally a free scoring team Rangi opened up with an acceptable 18 points in the opening quarter to lead by 8 but that was as good as it got.
A cold Auckland night must have got to both teams as MAGS shot just 29% from the field (18/62) with Rangi only marginally better, 20/64, at 31%.
Brayden Inger has been in good form of late and he had 14 points at the interval with Rangi 33-20 ahead.
As he has been all season Michael Gardner was the main scoring threat for Mt Albert and he scored 11 points, including a brace of threes, in the third period as MAGS trimmed the Rangi advantage (43-36).
Rangitoto guard Cam Stone sunk a triple and Harry Clarke collected half a dozen points in the final ten minutes as the regular season champs recorded their twelfth win of the season.
MAGS coach Daryl Cartwright was pleased with his team’s defensive work, “We battled back to striking distance but couldn’t execute at the end. It was a good effort defensively holding them to under sixty.”
Final Score: MAGS 45 – Gardner 25, Trent Kimiangatau 8, Jack Morrison 6 Rangitoto 54 – Inger 15, Clarke 12, Dan Fotu 8, Logan Anderson 8
In the final game of the round Liston College saved their best until last beating Onehunga High School 97-96 in the third overtime game of the night. The win was Liston’s first of the season
Final Standings with one game between Rosmini and Kelston to be played on Monday August 8th. The top four teams will contest the semi-finals on August 19th.
12-2 Rangitoto College
10-3 Rosmini College
10-4 Westlake Boys HS
5-8 Kelston Boys HS
2-12 Onehunga HS
1-13 Liston College