This team takes back-to-back to an all-new level, winning the Otago Secondary School Sevens title for four years' consecutively, since 2017.
Columba College Rugby began in 2016 with former teacher and Otago NPC Representative, Mr Josh Walden, who left the school in 2017 to take up an offer of club rugby in Hong Kong. Since our students were given a taste of this demanding sport they have never looked back, enjoying the physicality and getting stuck into the mud!
On Wednesday evening, a number of Columba College supporters braved the sub-zero winter conditions and made their way down to Logan Park Uni Oval to support our Senior A Sevens team in the final. This team is no stranger to the big dance having been in the final for the previous four years. Captain Maia Joseph won the toss and elected to kick off to gain field position, and with an emotional yet incredibly motivational speech by Vice Captain Niamh Paterson, they were more than ready for the showdown against local rivals, St Hilda's.
Starting off strong was the goal; they did just that, branching out to a 17 - 0 halftime scoreline after tries were awarded to superstar Year 10 wing, Lara McCulloch (2) and lethal Year 8 speedster, Madison Flutey. "Keep pushing," was the advice given by coach Bob Sinclair at half-time with the target of keeping their rivals scoreless. Territory weighed heavily towards the opposition in the second half although a strong kicking game by team leader, Maia Joseph, ensured we gained back field position, allowing young star Madison Flutey to cross for her second try. Two conversions by Captain Fantastic gave the group a 24-0 scoreline heading into the final three minutes. On the back-foot after a few contentious referee decisions, Columba were under the pump, defending their own try-line. Some incredible score-saving tackles were made across the entire field by all players, led strongly by the boldness of Niamh Paterson with her never-give-up attitude, as she encouraged her squad to stay in the grind. Eventually outnumbered on the sideline, St Hilda's crossed for a late consolation try before the referee had blown his whistle to call the end of the game.
Columba's near-flawless performance led to the incredibly impressive achievement of being crowned Otago Secondary School Champions. We remain undefeated for a 4th year in a row! It is a huge accolade for a talented team. Well done to all involved - Columba College is extremely proud of you.
Bring on the First XV Season!