MGM are the new Raluve Southern Zone champions, edging out Naitasiri Secondary with a one-point victory, 18-17, at a rain-soaked and slippery HFC Stadium in Suva today.
Naitasiri was winning 17-13 near the end, but MGM got a crucial penalty right at the hooter, close to Naitasiri’s try-line.
MGM Captain Carletta Yee made a bold decision, choosing to pick and go. She was stopped just short of Naitasiti try line but managed to maintain possession of the ball. MGM quickly spread the ball out wide, creating an opening for Vilisi Vabati. Seizing the opportunity, Vabati charged ahead, leaving the defenders in her wake, and touched down for the decisive try.
Yee’s leadership and outstanding performance throughout the match earned her the well-deserved title of the player of the match.
At halftime, MGM held a narrow lead of 8-3, but Naitasiri Secondary came back strong in the second half, making it a neck-and-neck contest until the final whistle.
MGM’s points came from three tries and a penalty, whilst Naitasiri’s came from two converted tries and a penalty.
Naitasiri Secondary will be looking to make amends in the national Raluve finals.
In the U16 grade, Naitasiri Secondary won 20-0 over Lomary.