This weekend saw College’s 1st and 2nd XV rugby teams and our 1st XI hockey team play Glenwood at home for the last fixtures of the winter season.
Our Red Army 1st XI were on top form, securing an excellent 5-0 victory on Paes, much to the jubilation of our watching boarders.
After losing to Glenwood’s 2nd XV last week, College’s 2nd XV came back strongly in the 2nd half to win their match 15-11.
Our 1st XV secured a long-awaited victory last weekend at Glenwood, but sadly were not able to repeat this on Saturday and although leading 17-16 with seconds to go, conceded a penalty which gave Glenwood the 19-17 win.
This was a tight match that could have gone either way, and there some consolation for the #RedBlackWhite with 5th former Spha Ngcobo winning the Supa Quick Man of the Match award.
Rugby 1st team match report – Cameron Fraser 1st XV coach
On Saturday 11 September 2021, the Maritzburg College 1st XV took on the boys from Glenwood in what was a nail biting encounter.
The 1st half was very much a back and forth tug-of-war like struggle for both teams as neither school could cross the try line in the 1st half. College had many opportunities to kick at goal but chose to go for touch. All the points in the 1st half came courtesy of the boot of Layron Millborrow the Glenwood flyhalf. Maritzburg College falling victim to ill-discipline conceded 6 points to end of the 1st half 6 -0 to Glenwood.
Glenwood managed to score the 1st points of the 2nd half with a penalty kick within striking distance. The second half was more exciting as College managed to get on the board with some very well controlled pick-and-goes followed by a try from Mawande Mdanda, College’s loosehead prop. AJ Knoetze managed to convert which left the score at 9-6 to Glenwood.
Shortly thereafter College scored again after an incisive counter attack launched by Spha Ngcobo. Wela Takata managed to thread the eye of the needle and executed a pinpoint pass to Sipho Radu who scored under the poles. College led 14-9. Glenwood hit back with a few forward surges and Phathu the Glenwood loosehead prop crashed over to score Glenwood’s 1st and only try.
College hit back with a brilliant kick by AJ Knoetze to lead 17-16. College attempted to close out the game with some effective pick-and-goes to see out the match. Unfortunately we couldn’t outlast the referees decision to penalize the College boys. Layron Millborrow managed to send home the penalty to give Glenwood the victory. An incredibly close encounter which could have gone either way.
Hockey 1st team Match Report (Mr Kyle Emerson, 1st team coach)
This was the third meeting between these teams this year. After a slightly ‘below-par’ performance the week before by the College 1st XI, they were determined to up their standard of performance for the last game of the season. From the start of the game the College team showed what they are capable of and asserted their dominance.
They put the Glenwood team under pressure high up the field and were able to create many goal-scoring opportunities throughout the game. The relentless pressure and ability to convert defence into attack so quickly, meant that there was no rest for the Glenwood 1st XI. The conditions were tough for both teams. The intense heat, high tempo that the game was played at and the lack of physical conditioning of the players meant that it was a bit more difficult to be as clinical as usual.
Ayakha Mthalane was the first to get on the scoreboard in the 10th minute of the game. Carrick McKean pierced the Glenwood defence with a ball he slapped into the circle. The goalkeeper came charging out to stop a College striker getting a touch on it, but it fell to Mthalane at the top of the circle who moved the goalkeeper and calmly flicked it over him with a lob into the back of the net.
The second goal came from a penalty corner in the 27th minute. Glenwood did well to defend the previous three penalty corners which College had, but Thomas Conolly was able to place a low and hard drag-flick past the Glenwood goalkeeper. Callum Osborne made it 3–0 just before half time when he converted a penalty stroke. The stroke was awarded after Thomas Conolly was badly fouled in the circle after a great counterattack, which started with Osborne throwing an overhead to Ross Crookes who linked up with Conolly in the circle.
In the 6th minute of the 3rd quarter the result was put out of Glenwood’s reach. Callum Osborne was again quick to react and launched a counterattack with an overhead to Mthalane in space, who ran past the advancing goalkeeper and passed the ball to an unmarked Crookes who had the easiest of tap-ins. The heat and the fatigue of the players saw the 4th quarter riddled with basics errors from both teams.
Despite this, College continued to dominate possession and created some good chances which were kept out from the Glenwood goalkeeper. With 6 minutes to go until full time, College’s high press allowed Mthalane to pick the ball off the Glenwood midfielder high in the field before eliminating two defenders and hitting a powerful forehand into the backboard.
The final game of the year was a convincing performance from the College 1st XI who outplayed their opposition with their superior tactical awareness. It was an emotional end for the matric boys who enjoyed their last match on Papes as they ended their College careers on a high note.