St Joseph’s College has beaten GPS rivals St Ignatius College 34-23 in a closely fought battle in front of a capacity crown on a warm and sunny winter’s day at Hunter’s Hill on Saturday.
Neither team had things all their own way in what turned out to be an absorbing round 3 clash.
Riverview was out to a 20-13 lead at half-time: courtesy to their scoring three consecutive tries, two being long-range intercepts to their wingers.
In the second half Joeys regrouped and through superior possession and field position, they slowly wore Riverview down.
After an early penalty goal to Riverview in the second half, a 10 point lead was never going to be enough and Joeys over the next 20 minutes scored three quick tries of their own during this period of play: off the back of their go-forward rolling maul platform provided by their forwards.
Riverview rallied late, but couldn’t get across the stripe to pull back Joeys’ 34-23 lead.
Joeys effort was all the more pleasing in getting the win, as they lost their skipper, Australian schoolboy and *Matthew Street award winner in Hugh Bokenham during the second minute of play.
Bokenham’s thumb was dislocated, piercing his skin in the process.
Next weekend Joeys, who have five Australian Schoolboy representatives among their ranks, play Kings at Gowan Brae.
Kings are yet to win a match, but they pushed undefeated Scots all the way in their narrow 15-14 loss at Bellevue Hill.
Riverview regroup to play the winless Shore in their next match and they should be far too strong for them.
If both Joeys and Scots – who play current third placed team on the ladder in Newington – win next weekend, it sets up a tantalising round 5 match-up between the two teams for the premiership.
Joeys 34: O’Brien 2, Robinson, Moretti, Dalton tries, Gibbs 3 conversions, 1 penalty goal defeated Riverview 23: Cressey 2, Schmidt tries, 1 conversion, 2 penalty goals
*Please note: The Matthew Street award goes to the recipient deemed as the premier schoolboy rugby player in NSW each season.