CRL MASSETTI CUP ROUND 7 WRAP
A foggy Saturday in Christchurch could not prevent a tryscoring bonanza in Round 7 of Canterbury Rugby League’s Massetti Cup.
Competition leader Hornby showed no sentimentality in subjecting bottom-placed Halswell to an 86-0 rout on the Hornets’ Club Day at Halswell Domain.
The Panthers finished with 16 tries after piling on 50 points in the second half. Fullback Jordan Coleman was the chief destroyer with four tries, while Regan Stanton bagged a hat-trick and centre partner Caius Faatili – usually a back-rower – notched a double.
Props Nick Stewart and Rulon Nutira also powered over for four-pointers in a rare feat for a front-row pairing.
The Panthers boast an extraordinary plus-196 for-and-against after seven rounds, while the Hornets remain winless.
Linwood also racked up a big victory on the road to keep pace with archrivals Hornby at the top of the table, overwhelming Papanui 54-16.
The Keas led 32-6 at halftime, but the Tigers showed some spirit in a four-tries-to-two second half. Centre Erwin Sauni and five-eighth Toi Sepuloni both scored two tries for the defending premiers, while halfback Daniel Hartley racked up an 18-point haul from a try and seven goals.
Celebration was unable to repeat the second-half heroics of a week earlier against Riccarton, going down 30-18 to Northern at Murphy Park.
The Lions caused a major boilover by overcoming a 20-point deficit in Round 6 against the Knights. But despite heading into the break locked at 6-all, the Bulldogs proved too strong in the second stanza to pick up a vital win.
Eastern Eagles also came back to earth following their stunning upset of the Panthers in Round 6, edged out 24-22 by the Knights in an absorbing clash at Crosbie Park.
The hosts led 20-12 at halftime and held on in a thriller, finishing with five tries to the Eagles’ four.
The result creates a three-way tie for third spot between the Bulldogs, Knights and Eagles.
Burnham Chevaliers again threw down the gauntlet to Linwood Keas in the CRL Women’s Premiership, carving out a 20-16 win over the defending champions at Coronation Park on Sunday.
It was the Chevaliers’ second win over the Keas already this season and creates a four-point gap between the Women’s Premiership pacesetters. But it was a much tighter result than Burnham’s 49-16 win earlier this month – and the clubs are already shaping as likely grand final opponents.
In the other Round 7 fixture, Hornby Panthers cemented third spot on the ladder with a 44-8 victory over Celebration Lions.
CRL MASSETTI CUP ROUND 7
Hornby Panthers 86 (Jordan Coleman 4, Regan Stanton 3, Caius Faatili 2, Nick Stewart, Rulon Nutira, Leo Petelo, Alekisio Hifo, Tyron Arona, Keletsia Tongotongo, Ramsay Sula tries; James Baxendale 8, Brad Campbell 3 goals) defeated Halswell Hornets 0 at Halswell Domain
Linwood Keas 54 (Erwin Sauni 2, Toi Sepuloni 2, Rangi Thompson, Ben Ilalio, Phil Wahnig, Daniel Hartley, Thoren Fidow-Kele, Kyle Amer tries; Hartley 7 goals) d Papanui Tigers 16 (Elestise Tamala, Niko Keepa Tauamiti, Jimmy Rangiawaha tries; Hayden Thompson, Antonio Lemalu goals) at Papanui Domain
Riccarton Knights 24 (Jope Tagicakibau, Rikki Bidois, Caleb Reweti, Justin Lynch, Kolio Vailuu tries; Tagicakibau, Zion Kamana-Ruka goals) defeated Eastern Eagles 22 (Junior Peneli 2, Mau Atonio, Tyrone Stowers tries; Peneli 3 goals) at Crosbie Park
Northern Bulldogs 30 defeated Celebration Lions 18 at Murphy Park
LADDER: Hornby Panthers 12 (+196), Linwood Keas 12 (+116), Northern Bulldogs 8 (+74), Eastern Eagles 8 (+14), Riccarton Knights 8 (-4), Celebration Lions 4 (-71), Papanui Tigers 4 (-135), Halswell Hornets 0 (-192)
Photo Credit: Dai Roberts