college logoA perfect record in pool play saw Ashburton College’s A netballers top their section at the South Island Secondary Schools’ Netball Tournament in Nelson yesterday.

They beat last year’s runners-up Southland Girls’ High School 29-26 yesterday morning to add to their day one wins – 35-31 over Nayland College, and 41-29 over Marlborough Girls’ High School.

It was just the start the side’s coaching staff wanted, as they eyed a top 16 finish in the 32-team A grade competition, and credit for the big win over Marlborough went to both ends of the court.

Samantha Holden was a menace on defence, gaining multiple tips and intercepts, while shooter Hayley Tallentire shot 35 from 41 (83 per cent).

The Ashburton girls were on fire, racing out to an 8-1 lead over Nayland in their second game, too, but let them back into the match.

Ashburton’s defensive duo of Holden and Mia Pearson created numerous turnovers but the side failed to turn that possession into goals at the other end.

Jasmin Strawbridge entered the fray at goal attack and created more space in the circle and shot with confidence, and eventually Ashburton College came away with the win which put them in a strong position heading into day two, as the only unbeaten team in section H.

They’re now in section V and started post-section play with a narrow 33-32 win over Central Southland College late yesterday, and will now look to keep that unbeaten streak going against Nelson College for Girls this morning and Rangiora High School this afternoon.

Down in the B grade, in section E, Mount Hutt College’s tournament hasn’t gone quite as well so far, losing all three of their pool play games.

They lost to Verdon College and Kaikoura High School on day one, then lost to Timaru’s Roncalli College 32-16 yesterday morning.

Today, Mount Hutt College will play Bayfield High School this morning, and Tokomairiro High School in the afternoon in B grade’s section W.

Meanwhile, but also in Nelson, the Ashburton College boys’ first XI hockey side drew nil-all with Nelson College in their first Johnson Cup game, with goalie Jacob Gray seeing off a Nelson onslaught which included six short corners in the first two quarters.

They then took on Cashmere High School, who they’d played twice already in the Christchurch competition this season, and after coming out with hard flat passes and finding space to slot an early goal in the first quarter, Cashmere went on to win 3-0.

After conceding an early goal in the second quarter too, Ashburton College defended well for the rest of the first half, with Jonty Small doing particularly well to hold Cashmere out.

Cole Aitken came close to scoring for Ashburton College in an even third quarter, before Cashmere landed a late goal to make it 3-0 at the end of the third quarter, and that was the way it stayed.

Yesterday, the Ashburton College boys took on Mount Roskill Grammar School and drew 1-all.

The Ashburton College boys’ second XI, playing in the Coaches Cup tournament in Ashburton, followed up their day one win over Waitaki Boys’ High School on Monday with a 6-1 loss to Roncalli College yesterday morning.

And in Cromwell, the Ashburton College girls’ first XI made it two from two with a 2-0 win over Gore High School yesterday morning, following on from their win over South Canterbury Rural Combined on day one.

Down in Timaru at the Gary Sowden Tournament, the Ashburton College girls’ first XI football team lost 6-0 to Papanui High School on Monday morning and then 1-0 to Dunstan on Monday afternoon, and yesterday they finished off pool play with a 3-0 loss to Kapiti College, to finish bottom of pool C.

That put them into the play-offs for ninth to 16th, where they will today play Timaru’s Roncalli College.

Meanwhile, in Dunedin at the Junior Secondary Schools’ Premiership Zone 4 tournament, the Ashburton College junior girls’ basketball team has finished 12th after losing to Rangi Ruru 80-60 in their final game yesterday.

The day before, they beat Riccarton High School 58-48 in the morning, before losing to Taeri 111-59 in the afternoon, which put them into the play-off for 11/12th.

Today, Ashburton College’s senior boys and girls basketballers start their tournaments in Nelson.

By Erin Tasker © The Ashburton Guardian - 3 September 2019