Nelson College ended its 2018 campaign with an entertaining 38-31 win over Shirley Boys today to claim the UC Championship Plate.
By JONTY DINE [Nelson App]
Following the victory, Nelson skipper Anton Segner capped his sensational season being named player of the tournament.
"Glad to finish the season on a high, we were aiming for that top four, but we will take fifth place,” Segner says.
The flanker says the high scoring affair was an enjoyable end to the year.
"We had a really good start, but Shirley stayed in the game so credit to them for their attitude.”
Segner says he was very thankful and excited to be awarded the Phillip MacDonald medal and says the side will return stronger in 2019.
"It’s a young team so we will have the majority returning next season, sad to see the 7th form boys leave but l am looking forward to next year.”
Photo: Evan Barnes/Shuttersport NZ.
The hosts got off to a blistering start, centre Vaea Tutuila strolling over to score under the bar after just two minutes.
Shirley responded through tries to front rowers Tristyn Scheepers and Shaun Berryman before Segner stormed his way through four defenders to take a lead they would not relent.
Blindside Fergus Hughes got through a power of work while Thomas Zhorab ran the ship superbly for the home side.
Nelson’s big boppers began to run riot late in the first, Taya Brown and Isaiah Malaulau eating up metres at will.
Malaulau scored Nelson’s third, easing over off the back of a scrum as Nelson turned on the razzle dazzle stringing together some brilliant offloads to put wingers Conor Johnston and Daniel Rogers over either side of the break.
The try-ferst continued in the second, replacement hooker Jayden Horgan bringing Shirley back into the contest until a stunning individual effort from Conor Rhind increased the host’s advantage.
Nelson cleared it bench as Shirley scored again and hammered away for an equalizer but college’s defence held firm to call curtains on a thrilling game of running rugby.
Scorers: Nelson College 38 (Tutuila, Segner, Malaulau, Rogers, Johnston, Rhind tries, Carew 3, Barton 1 cons)v Shirley Boys 31 (Scheepers, Berryman, Hansen, Broekhuizen, Horgen tries, Barry 3 cons)