At the end of Round 7, the GPS 1st XV competition was in the same situation as the 2012 season finished: all the teams were beating teams below them in the table, and it followed that (except for the unbeaten Scots XV) that all were losing to the teams above them.
Would that trend continue in Round 8?
Newington 58 — Joeys 21
Joeys, who have a proud tradition of winning, were expected to bounce back from their big loss last week – but to their chagrin they suffered another hiding.
Newington struck early when a Joeys’ pass went astray and 14. Sepesa Loga-Tarogi raced up the touchline. Tackled by 6. Josh Canturi, he popped the ball up and eventually it went to 15. Taane Milne, who set up 11.Simon Kennewell for a try in the corner. After an pin-point conversion by 9. Joey Lussick, Newington led 7-0 at six minutes.
Then, in midfield, Joeys’ turned the ball over again. It was again shifted to Loga-Tarogi, and when he slipped a tackle he passed to 5. Joe Duarte who scored near the posts: Newington led14-0 at ten minutes.
Joeys steadied after that and for 15 minutes matters were even; then Joeys got in the right real estate after a penalty kick. When they got near the Newington line after the lineout Josh Canturi barged over.
New attacked straight after the restart and after runs by two of their stars 13. Tepai Moeroa and Lussick, 4. George Prassas barged over from the back of a ruck. At 26 minutes New led 19-7.
Canturi limped off after an injury but his replacement Sam Costigan scored next. Joeys 13. Oskar Vierod ran across the defensive line, got the ball out in a tackle to 12. Will McDonnell and when he was grabbed he back-handed a pass for Costigan to score the try. Spectacular !!!
After Lussick kicked a penalty goal on the bell for Newington they led 22-14 at half-time.
But soon after the break Moeroa sucked in Joeys’ defenders near their goal-line and Lussick passed the ball to 8. Anthony Vassilis who scored. Then Milne made a break and back-handed the ball to Loga-Tarogi who was swung around but managed to dot the ball down. Newington had jumped out of the blocks and only seven minutes after oranges led 34-14.
As in the first half there was a long period of parity but it was too good to last for the home side and Moeroa scored after a lineout 15 minutes in.
Joeys got down to the Newington red zone but the ball was ripped away from their maul but seconds later 4. Koim Wingti returned the favour, ripped out the ball and went over. It was too little too late and with only eight minutes left Newington were winning 39-21.
The Joeys’ defence seemed to give up after that and Newington scored three tries before the final bell.
Milne had a moment of magic and starting nearly 70 metres out weaved his way through the Joeys team to score under the posts, untouched. Then 12. Ellis Abrahams scored in the corner and 6. David Morris got a hard-earned try when he was just able to plant the ball on the line.
58-21 was a hiding.
Joeys started the game badly with two tries surrendered from turnovers and they were always playing from behind. They had to commit numbers against a bigger pack and when they did the ball was whipped wide which found them short of defenders several times. Some of the big Newington backs also attracted too many defenders.
Newington dominated for long periods as they did in their home game at Stanmore, and their star Australian Schools players were too hard to handle – though in different ways.
To top things off their kicking game was better and they were able to play from better field positions than Joeys were able to. That was a problem for the home team because Newington scored on most visits to their 22.
3. Matt Sandell, 2. Andrew Deegan, 1.Josh Canturi
Sandell was like a colossus in tight situations and always hard to stop. Deegan was one of Joeys few threats in the backline with ball in hound, and Canturi had a fine game before he had to retire early.
3. Joey Lussick, 2. Taane Milne, 1. Sepesa Loga-Tarogi
Lussick is a big game player and directed a lot of the scoring movements. Milne was hardly ever stopped first time as he was too strong for most first-up tacklers. Under 16 player Loga-Tarogi showed his promise with several runs down touch and was difficult to get on the ground.
Honourable mention to 1. Vunipola Fifita and David Morris in the forwards; also centre Tepai Morea, who attracted tacklers like a gravitational field.
Nine tries to three was about the right measure of dominance for Newington. They stay alive for next week’s season defining match against Scots.
Newington — 58
Tries: Simon Kennewell, Joe Duarte, George Prassis, Anthony Vasilis, Sepesa Loga-Tarogi, Tepai Moreoa, Taane Milne, Ellis Abrahams, David Morris.
Conversions: Joey Lussick (4), Milne.
Penalty goal: Lussick
Joeys — 21
Tries: Josh Canturi, Sam Costigan, Koim Wingti
Conversions: Andrew Deegan (3)
Referee: Mr. James Scholtens.
3rd XV — Joeys 24 – Scots 19
4th XV — Forfeited by Newington: only ten of their players made an appearance.
16As — Joeys 59 – Newington 5
Click on arrow for a match report of Kings v. Shore on Page 2 by “George Smith” and “The Spaceman”.