The second week of the Auckland Secondary Schools Premier League saw wins for Rangitoto, Rosmini, Mt Albert and Auckland Grammar meaning a fortnight into the season only Rangitoto and Rosmini are unbeaten.
Most pundits would probably have picked St Kentigern College to beat Auckland Grammar School but it wasn’t to be. Grammar had six players with 9 points or more as they bounced back, after a first round loss, to record a confidence building 86-81 victory.
Connor Ngan made three triples for AGS on his way to a team high 19 points – he was ably supported by Jamal Todd and Oliver Gibson with 16 points apiece whilst Caleb Landon and Toby Caldwell both had 13.
For St Kent’s Dontae Russo, in just his second Premier League outing, led all scorers with 24 points and Kazlo Evans was also in good form with 22 points.
Grammar forged an 18-14 first quarter lead and extended that to 41-34 by half-time. Caldwell earned himself some profitable trips to the foul line and with Landon active, the hosts were in charge at half time. Points late in the half from Russo prevented the margin from being greater.
Ngan and Caldwell scored a pair of threes apiece in an even third period – Russo, Alex McNaught and Martin Gan landing from deep for St Kent’s who trailed 67-61 at three-quarter time.
Evans scored 10 points in the final period for St Kent’s but Grammar weren’t going to let this one slip – Todd, Landon and Ngan getting the job done in the fourth to seal a notable win for AGS.
St Kentigern 81 – Russo 24, Evans 22, Kerr 12, NcNaught 10, Gan 10
AGS 86 – Ngan 19, Todd 16, Gibson 16, Landon 13, Caldwell 13, Vea 9
Rangitoto College scored the first 11 points of the game and were 33-20 to the good at quarter time. Westlake battled away bravely but conceding such a lead proved too difficult to overcome – the hosts holding the lead throughout to win 101-84.
A full gym, with plenty of travelling support for Westlake Boys, were warmed by a fast paced encounter.
In the early stages of the final quarter it appeared as if Westlake might make a charge as Josh Kooiman, Jett Thompson and Antonio Leutich made scores – with 5 minutes to play Lake trailed by just nine points (77-86).
Critically Lucas Payne scored on the next possession and with Zeke Priest, Ethan Skelton and Zach Riley also adding to their personal tallies Rangitoto controlled the dying stages with a 15-7 finish.
Earlier Zach Riley nailed a triple on the opening possession to set the tone for Rangi, as they quickly established an 11 point lead before Christian Martin gave the Lake fans something to cheer about. The Chang brothers Zane and Rocco combined neatly for a score to help Westlake but Riley scored a dozen points in an opening quarter dominated by the hosts.
The two teams exchanged baskets in the second frame but when Rangitoto gave up possession for Leutich and Reuben Natusch to score easy baskets coach Kenny Stone needed a timeout.
Kala Dryden and Skelton settled things down for Rangi and with Riley throwing down an athletic dunk they were ahead 55-42 at the interval.
Westlake settled on a 1-2-2 zone in the third and for a while it paid dividends as the Rangitoto scoring slowed.
Priest landed a deep three but Kooiman and Boston Caldwell went back-to back from long range for the visitors. Payne then scored off a lovely heads-up pass from Priest and with 10 to go Rangi led by 10 (77-67).
Jacob Fotu scored on the resumption before the brief Westlake run but it was Rangitoto that prevailed, recording a second straight Premier League win.
Rangitoto 101 – Riley 31, Priest 16/12r, Ethan Skelton 20/8a Payne 14, Powell 7, Jovanovic 7
Westlake 84 – Martin 14, Caldwell 13, Kooiman 12, Z Chang 12, Leutich 9
Liston College made the slightly better start forging a 19-15 lead – James Hickey, Safa Prasad and forward Troy Lee Baker causing Rosmini some problems.
A little sluggish in the opening period Rosmini had the best of the second quarter with Leo Wenham and Charlie Dalton to the fore. Des Helu knocked down a three-pointer close to half-time but Liston trailed 40-35 at the break.
Helu was again on the scoresheet early in the third but Taine Murray and Sean Murphy began to boss proceedings. With Cyrus Grafil contributing a couple of baskets Rosmini were sitting comfortable at three-quarter time leading 67-48.
Baker and Prasad posted points for Liston but it was Tom Beattie and Murphy that had the final say in an eventually comfortable Rosmini win.
Liston 67 – Prasad 18, Helu 14, Hickey 12, Baker 10
Rosmini 89 – Murray 20, S Murphy 20, Dalton 10, Beattie 8, K Murphy 8
Sataan Tawera, with 29 points, was the star of the show for Mt Albert Grammar as they recorded a convincing 87-57 win against St Peter’s College.
It wasn’t all plain sailing for MAGS as St Peter’s were well in touch at half-time only trailing 36-29.
Tawera and Denvor Elia were already in double figures for MAGS at that point, with Jack Donnelly the leading scorer for St Peter’s who must have liked their chances at that stage.
The third period was all MAGS. Kuresa Tapula’aia posted three quick baskets at the start of the quarter, Tawera maintained the momentum and when Dakota Stephens converted from long range MAGS had outscored their opposition 25-7 in the frame and with a lead of 61-36 assured themselves of victory.
Mitch Lancaster and Donnelly posted points for St Peter’s in the fourth but Morgan Aiono, on his way to a massive double-double, and Mondray Fiatau helped cap off a fine MAGS performance.
MAGS 87 – Tawera 29, Aiono 13/17r, Elia 11, Fiatau 11, Tapula’aia 9
St Peter’s 57 – Donnelly 20, Lancaster 8, Sula 7, Arlove 7, Errey 7
Teams will now take a break during the school holidays with fixtures to resume on July 24th.