Junior Water Polo Wins Plate Championship at NISS

The King’s Junior A Water Polo team recently competed at the North Island Secondary Schools' Junior Championships. We kicked off our pool matches with a comfortable 10-4 win over Hutt International Boys' School with two players claiming hat-tricks on the day, Amosa Gould and Campbell Hulbert.

In our first match we encountered the silver medallists from the Auckland League, Rosmini College. As we had tied with them recently in the Auckland League, we went into the game confident we could compete well. We managed to do this and led for the first three quarters of the match, however Rosmini had a great last quarter and the final score was 5-3 against us. Charlie Knox was our top scorer with an extraordinary lob and one of his trademark counters.

This left us needing to beat Mount Maunganui to make the quarter finals but they were far too strong on the day and although we were within two goals at the three quarter mark, they pulled away in the fourth quarter and the final score was 9-3 in their favour.

So, a disappointed team found itself competing in the Plate round where our first match was against Rangitoto College, a team King’s had never beaten in A grade water polo. While our defence was sound throughout this entire match on attack, we just couldn’t find the back of the net so found ourselves 0-3 down with five minutes remaining in the match.

However, the tides were to turn and Tevyn Anitelea opened the scoring, drilling an extra man shot into the bottom right hand corner right at the end of the third quarter. Further goals to Amosa Gould and to Joseph Nevill-Jackson drew us level before Amosa gave a masterclass in centre forward play to score twice in 40 seconds, first scoring a power shot by turning his defender then putting the match beyond doubt with an outrageous left-handed lob.

Our second match in the second round was against St Peter’s College. Once again it was a tight match and decided in the final minute of play. This match will long be remembered for the man-of-the-match performance of goalkeeper Caleb Brooke who achieved a remarkable double by both blocking a penalty and getting on the scoresheet himself as he rocketed a bounce-shot into the top right hand corner of the St Peter’s net from a distance of 25-meters, capping off an excellent 6-4 victory.

Our last match of the season was a comfortable 15-4 win over St Patrick’s College; a match in which all the field managed goals including Tom Clarkson getting his first of the season.

So, we ended the Tournament as Plate Champions with a four win, two loss record. Well done to the Junior water polo boys!