Nelson’s 1st XV has won local bragging rights after defeating Waimea College 57-14 in a one-sided affair on Saturday.
A rampant college side ran in nine tries in a dominant display, led once again by its outstanding loose forward trio.
The tone was set for a fierce battle in the UC Championship as both teams laid down their respective challenges. Nelson made an early statement, decimating Waimea’s own scrum to earn the first penalty of the game.
Both skippers were spoken to and ordered to settle their sides after a tense exchange between the forward packs.
Waimea had the first chance to cross the chalk but were foiled by a pilfer from Anton Segner.
The inspirational captain then drew first blood for Nelson on the back of a storming run from lock Taya Brown.
Nelson scored their second soon after when flanker Fergus Hughes broke away down the blindside and linked with his winger Connor Johnston.
Waimea had a golden opportunity to open their account when winger Duncan Drysdale chased a chip and found himself alone in goal only needing to force the ball, but couldn’t control it.
Nelson made them pay and stretched their lead further after another surging run from Anton who produced a miracle reverse flick for winger Daniel Rogers.
First five Nico Barton was in hot form with the boot, nailing his third difficult conversion for a 26-0 advantage.
Waimea began to make simple errors, and when their restart did not find the 10-metre mark lock Taya Brown dotted down after some stunning interplay.
Nelson were dominant at set piece as Waimea’s lineout fell apart, however they did have another chance to register points right on the stroke of half-time as Drysdale had an unmarked man outside him with the line in sight but passed the ball into touch to close the half.
Bruising centre Vaea Tutuila ensured the ascendancy remained with the home side after oranges with a huge bust up field, the ever-present Fergus finishing off the sweeping movement with his second five pointer.
Drysdale then made up for his earlier blunders as he pounced on a loose offload from Nelson half back Mason Lind to streak 30 metres and score Waimea’s opener.
Nelson responded immediately as Anton again broke the line off a lineout and slipped the ball to Nico, who took his personal points tally to 17.
With a host of new combinations, Nelson lost a bit of fluency in the final fifteen, before replacement half back David Zohrab brought up the half century following another break from Fergus.
Louis Carmine capped off a busy afternoon in the midfield with Nelson’s final try before Waimea enjoyed a late consolation through Jacob Limmer, as Waimea were well and truly beaten 57-14.
Anton says the boys didn’t need much motivation to get up for the local derby. “I didn’t have to say much in the changing rooms, the boys are always up for a test against Waimea and the boys were fizzing all week.”
In the NPD Tasman Trophy, a late surge wasn’t enough to save Nelson RFC as they slumped to a 26-22 loss to Renwick at Neale Park.
In the weekend’s match of the round, the Marlborough sub union champions, Waitohi hosted Nelson Bays runners up, Marist with the hosts running out 45-22 winners in Picton.
Fresh off their Nelson Bays Sub-union win, the Stoke Eagles travelled to Awarua Park to take on Moutere, winning 45-31.
In other results, East Coast defeated Wanderers 20-15 at Seddon Domain while Central and Kahurangi piled on the points at Lansdowne Park with Central winning 61-41.