Metro win on the road against Massey RFC
By Jared Smith
St Johns Whanganui Metro have joined the Top 4 of the MRU Colts division after their third straight win over a lower tier team on Saturday.
On a wet weather afternoon from Whanganui to Taihape and down the road to Palmerston North, Metro picked up a priceless four-try bonus point in their 26-0 win over bottom-table Massey University RFC.
Still working through injury issues, coach Mark Cosford did not have a lot of depth on the bench for the away clash, but did pick up another couple of new players.
“It was atrocious conditions, rained through the game on and off,” the coach said.
“We went down there with the intentions on getting four points and a bonus.
“It was just a knuckle down and get through the elements day.
“It wasn’t pretty rugby, but take your five point and head on home.”
Metro scored two tries in each half, with second-five Joey Devine returning after missing the previous weekend to get one of them while also slotting three conversions.
The other try-scorers were lock Joe Oakman, blindside flanker Kane Hinga and winger Matthew McKenna.
Moving to a 3-3 record with six bonus points, Metro leapfrogged into fourth over Feilding Old Boys-Oroua, who lost a tussle at home with unbeaten College Old Boys RFC, 19-5.
“Like last year, the boys tick over these bonus points – you really need them,” said Cosford.
He is hoping to have a few more injured players return for the next away game this Saturday with Dannevirke SC, who after coming off the bye following six losses.
The St Johns Whanganui Metro Women have reached the end of the trail for their MRU season, as they just could not hold on their final Bottom 3 game with the Wairarapa Wahine Toa, beaten 17-15 at a muddy Spriggens Park.
Metro created history with their first win in three MRU seasons on April 30, when they beat Wairarapa 34-15 at Kaierau Country Club.
Both teams were looking to make a statement in their final fixture, Metro leading 15-7 entering the final ten minutes.
However, Wairarapa scored two more tries, as Metro were desperate to hold them on their line, but gave away too many offside penalties, and the weight of possession told.
“It was a very tough battle out there, we knew they were going to give it to us,” said prop Lavenia Nauga-Grey.
“We had a very outstanding season, it shows Sos’ work these last three seasons is helping us grow.”
Former Black Fern Sosoli Talawadua was unavailable for the last game, as she was attending a special ceremony to receive a ceremony of players receiving their official test caps.
There will be chances for most of the Metro squad to run it back with Wairarapa, as the Whanganui Women’s representative season will kick off in mid-July.
They will play a tournament in the capital against Wellington Maori, Wellington Development and Wairarapa Bush.
That will be followed by games against East Coast, Thames Valley and Wairarapa Bush again.
There will also be Girls Under 15 and Under 18 representative programmes.