There was plenty of action in Round 12 of the Auckland Secondary Schools Boy’s Premier League on Monday with Macleans College winning their first game of the season, Rangitoto College losing just their second game of the campaign and St Kentigern College all but securing the regular season title.
It’s been a tough season for Macleans College but with a healthy squad in action for virtually the first time this season they held off Liston College to win 75-73 for a welcome victory.
Macleans led by as many as 12 points in the fourth period but had to endure a nervy last few minutes as Liston closed to within two points in the closing stages. Liston had opportunities to tie proceedings in the last two minutes but couldn’t get shots to drop much to the relief of Adrian Boyd and his charges.
Early on Macleans guard Kraus Reyes scored 7 points but it was Liston who led at the quarter mark (19-13) thanks to 10 points from Preston Karatau.
Threes from Emannuel Cea plus buckets from Desmond Helu kept Liston briefly in the ascendancy but with Michael Babaran finding his range Macleans had a 56-48 lead by three-quarter time.
Jesse Manuel and Reyes extended the lead before triples from Helu and Kiani Saxon sparked a Liston revival. Karatau scored six straight points but Harry Smith and Sam Voykovich made critical free-throws to edge Macleans to that long awaited win.
Liston 73– P Karatau 22, D Helu 22, K Saxon 15, E Cea 6
Macleans 75– M Babaran 23, J Manuel 12, K Reyes 11, T Kempton 8
Auckland Grammar have suffered two agonising defeats in four days after going down 78-74 at St Kentigern College on Monday after losing 86-88 to Rangitoto on Friday.
Running the top two sides on the Premier League table so close shows that Grammar are capable of beating any team on their day but the two defeats means their top-four prospects are in the balance.
A win behind both Westlake and Rosmini, Grammar will need to win both of their remaining games and hope other results go their way.
St Kent’s made the brighter start with Martin Gan knocking down a three and Alex McNaught scoring six points to forge a 21-16 first quarter lead.
Jaga Mete and Daniel Boyd kept the scoring moving for AGS in the second but Levick Kerr was causing them some problems inside – the St Kent’s big man scored 11 points in the quarter to propel his team to a 44-30 half-time lead.
Grammar enjoyed much the better of the third spell as Connor Ngan, Mete and Boyd all connected from behind the three-point arc to trim the St Kent’s advantage to 60-56 with ten minutes to play.
There was nothing in it in the fourth – Ilaisa Tela, Boyd and Mete sharing the scoring load for AGS with Kerr, McNaught, Kazlo Evans and Elliot Watson doing the same for the league leaders. Eventually it was St Kent’s that prevailed but only just. The result means St Kent’s will win the Minor Premiership if they can win at Rangitoto College on Friday night.
St Kentigern 78– L Kerr 28, A McNaught 16, K Evans 15, S Broughton 7, E Watson 6
AGS 74– J Mete 29, D Boyd 17, C Ngan 11, I Tela 11
Rangitoto College suffered just their second defeat of the season after going down 85-74 at Rosmini College.
Taine Murray was the chief architect of the Rosmini win scoring a game high 30 points, the Tall Blacks triallist had 13 in the opening quarter which the hosts won 25-21.
Jared Thornton was prominent for Rangitoto – his 8 points plus 10 from Harry Payne meant the margin was still four points at half-time (43-39).
Rangi opened the second half with an 8-0 run with Payne and Zach Riley scoring a couple of baskets each but Rosmini countered with an identical run courtesy of Jason Mittef and Marvin Williams-Dunn. Reihana Maxwell-Topia scored the last six Rozza points in the quarter to keep his team in the ascendancy – ahead 62-56 at the third break.
Cian Emery dropped a corner three for Rosmini but Ethan Mandeno, Thornton and Payne kept Rangi on track who were down just 72-67 with four minutes left to play.
However Reimar Cruz and Williams-Dunn then converted back-to back triples and Rangi coach Kenny Stone required a timeout.
The resumption didn’t go to plan as Murray made two more threes to stretch the Rosmini lead to 81-67 Although Ethan Skelton made a couple of neat baskets Rosmini eased through the closing couple of minutes to solidify their top four place.
Rosmini 85– T Murray 30, R Maxwell-Topia 15, R Cruz 10, M Williams-Dunn 10, S Murphy 7
Rangitoto 74– H Payne 24, L Thornton 14/9rebs, T Te Puni 11, Z Riley 11, O Pae 6
Westlake kept their top-four hopes alive with a solid 90-68 win against Mt Albert Grammar, 36 points from Sam Mennenga the most telling contribution.
The Junior Tall Black had 11 points in the first period as MAGS, despite threes from Phoenix Sorensen, Denver Elia and Theo Coker-Grey found themselves 25-22 behind at that stage.
Westlake put their foot down in the second winning the quarter 28-11 with Christian Martin, Reuben Natusch and Dylan Wilkie notable contributors.
MAGS fared better after the interval with Josh Leger and Ben Skelton combining for ten points. Wilkie, Martin and Mennenga converted from deep as Westlake led 73-50 at three-quarter time.
MAGS shaded the last quarter but Westlake’s seventh win of the season was never under threat.
Westlake 90– S Mennenga 36, D Wilkie 9, C Martin 9, C Atkinson 8
MAGS 68– J Leger 14, P Sorensen 12, D Elia 12, T Coker-Grey 8
11-1 St Kentigern