by Photo Life

Rebuilding year for St Paul's premier basketball team

The premier boys’ side competed in the central region's zone finals in Rotorua recently.

Game 1 vs Hillcrest High School

Jarrod Mealings got a few going from deep, knocking down a few three-pointers. Blake Ryan managed to throw one from his own half, banging a deep three-pointer before quarter time. In the first quarter, we only had a slight lead 21-19. In the second quarter, Hillcrest came out hot with scores even at halftime. However, in the third and fourth quarter, St Paul's managed to work harder on our own boards, with Dylan Bartels and Blake Ryan picking up ten rebounds each.  St Paul's won the match, 73-51.

Game 2 vs John Paul College

First quarter both teams were evenly matched, both working hard on their own defensive end. By the end of the first quarter, the score was tied at 8-8. In the second quarter, once again a very close contest between the two teams, with John Paul College ahead by only one point. By the end of the first half, the score sat at 21-22. However, the momentum of the game started to swing to John Paul College in the second half. By the end of the third quarter the score was 49-33. From then onwards, we struggled to fight back and lost, 75-47. With 31 turnovers in it, it was always going to be tough to get back into the game.

Game 3 vs St John’s College (Hamilton)

A tough game for the boys against a very talented team. St John’s made it very difficult to get into any rhythm on offence. St Paul's were still able to get some good looks at the ball but failed to execute against a well-drilled unit. Final score was 30-108 loss for St Paul’s.

Game 4 vs Rotorua Premier Boys

After a tough match against St John’s, we were mentally pumped to play Rotorua Boys’ High School. We had good flow on offence, which made for good watching by all. At the end of the first quarter, scores were 9-36 to Rotorua Boys’. In the second quarter, St Paul's worked harder on ball movement and was able to bridge the gap, getting the score to 25-28 at halftime. Our team continued to work at both ends, but Rotorua was still able to push their lead out. The score at the end of the third quarter was 39-86. Clay Richardson pushed himself to another level, scoring 24 points for the game. However, it wasn’t enough, ending with a 55-115 loss.

Game 5 vs St Peter’s School (Cambridge)

St Peter’s came out shooting the lights out. Scoring 21 points in the first quarter. St Paul's scored 24 points in the third quarter but St Peter’s were able to stay with us, scoring 21 points for the quarter. In the end, St Peter’s wanted the game more and won convincingly 58-94.

Game 6 vs Katikati College

We were outplayed and outworked. We never got into the game and lost. SPC Premier Boys 57 – Katikati College 74.

Game 7 vs Opotiki High School

St Paul's last game of the tournament. We started our bench and they were able to stay close to Opotiki. However, in the fourth quarter, they were able to control the game to win by ten points. Final score was 72-62.

Overall placing for St Paul’s was 15th. Our thanks go to coach, Mr Jono Kraenzlin and manager Mr Michael Rameka.