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Metro get first 2022 win over Feilding Yellows

By Jared Smith

A lot has changed but one thing stays the same for the St Johns Whanganui Colts – they still have the wood on the Feilding Yellows after picking up their first MRU win of the season, 38-22 on Saturday.

The rematch of the 2020-21 finals has seen a lot of changes to both casts – each side rebuilding their roster – and at Spriggens Park a determined Metro clicked straight into gear, with even coach Mark Cosford surprised at the 19-0 lead.

“They got out of the gate early with a lot of intensity. They’re usually a slow starting team.”

About 30 minutes in and Metro eased up on the pressure – Feilding closing to 19-10 – but from there Metro kept their advantage for the remainder of the contest.

“This time they were hungry enough not to let it slip. They know they can do it now,” said Cosford.

“A ragged bunch, but they’re shaping up.”

Injuries continue to be a concern as Cosford added a dislocated shoulder and a damaged ankle to the team’s butcher’s bill.

He is hopeful at least a couple of the players hurt in the previous two games will make quick recoveries.

On Saturday, playmaker Joey Devine scored a hat trick of tries and slotted four conversions.

Also dotting down were flankers Lucas Reardon and Kane Hinga as well as for the first time, lock Lochlan Watson.

From a talented sporting family, Watson is the younger brother of former Metro prop and international judo champion Keightley, now with Dave Hoskin Carriers Marist and Steelform Whanganui squad member.

The younger brother Lochlan has also had judo success and is now getting back into rugby.

Taking maximum points saw Metro leapfrog from seventh to fifth on the table, now six points behind the Top 4, but with a game in hand on the team immediately above them in Feilding Old Boys-Oroua (3-2).

“There is a chance to catch them,” said Cosford.

With no WRFU club rugby this Saturday, Metro will have centre stage at Spriggens Park when they take on Old Boys Marist RC (1-3) at 12.45pm.

After taking the first bye of the Bottom 3 group in the MRU Women’s grade, Whanganui Metro will resume their campaign against Ashhurst Pohangina RFC at the Kimbolton Domain, kickoff 2.30pm.