It has taken twenty matches, but Rangi Ruru have finally relinquished the Connetics Shield, going down 3-1 to St. Margaret’s College in the final round match in the Secondary Schools Premier League.
Aiming for a second consecutive unbeaten regular season, Rangi were on the back foot early, falling behind as Niamh McKenzie put the challengers in front. The holders were back on level terms in the second quarter from the stroke spot thanks to captain Brittany Wang.
St. Margaret’s regained the lead through Emelia Surridge and played with confidence to hold the league leaders at bay for the rest of the match. They sealed the win with a second goal to Surridge, calmly slotting the ball into an open goal after Rangi removed their goalkeeper searching for the equaliser.
While Rangi Ruru retain the number one seeding heading into the semifinals, St. Margaret’s College finish only a point behind and become only the second team to hold the Connetics Shield since its inception at the end of the 2017 season.
In the boy’s match that was a virtual quarter final, Christchurch Boys’ got one over rivals Christ’s College with a comprehensive 4-0 victory, squeezing Christ’s out of the top four for the first time since the competition started in 2012.
Ben Hampton grabbed a double, while Liam Sharp and George Forbes also found the back of the net.
Moss Jackson still has nightmares thinking back to the Rankin Cup final of 2017, but his first victory against the same opposition as a coach could go some way to healing the scars. Boys High controlled the match from the outset and will relish being back in the top four after missing out in 2018.
Christchurch Girls’ got back into the winning circle with a strong 2-0 victory over St. Andrew’s College, while Burnside High put in a spirited display to draw 2-2 with Villa Maria College.
St. Andrew’s College boys team warmed up for the top four as they search their fifth title, beating Burnside High 6-1.
The boy’s semifinals will see St. Bede’s College taking on Christchurch Boys, while St. Andrew’s College go up against Timaru Boys.
In the girl’s competition, Rangi Ruru play Villa Maria College and St. Margaret’s College will battle Christchurch Girls.
St. Bede’s College 3-3 Timaru Boys’ High School
Christchurch BHS 4-0 Christ’s College
St. Andrew’s College 6-1 Burnside High School
St. Margaret’s College 3-1 Rangi Ruru Girls’ School
Christchurch GHS 2-0 St. Andrew’s College
Villa Maria College 2-2 Burnside High School