The Takuvaine Premier men’s team raced out to a three-goal lead, and eventually held on for a 3-2 win over Puaikura on Saturday at Happy Valley.
James Nand staked the home team to the early advantage, netting a penalty kick into the bottom right corner.
Filo Grace followed Nand’s footsteps later in the first half and tacked onto Takuvaine’s lead with a goal of his own, poking one past the keeper following a great touch pass from team mate Tave Tereapii after 33 minutes of the game.
Takuvaine steadily increased the pressure on Puaikura as the first half wore on.
Puaikura’s defence held strong for the remainder of the half as they went into the break with a 2-0 lead.
Takuvaine would not let up in the second half, as Peni Kitiona scored right from the opening kick-off when he powered in a long distance shot, giving the team a three point lead.
Puaikura cut the Takuvaine lead to two 10 minutes into the second spell after a cross was flicked on by Paavo Mustonen, giving Dwayne Tiputoa the opportunity to head the ball into the net.
Tiputoa cut into the lead again, scoring another goal with 10 minutes left in the match.
Takuvaine locked up on defence for the rest of the game thanks to the leadership of Ed Nicholas and great play from his fellow defenders.
Puaikura was able to have one final attack in the closing seconds with a cross kick into the box, but Takuvaine cleared it as time expired to seal the one goal victory.
In the other Premier men’s matches, Tupapa Maraerenga continue their unbeaten march and are proving to be an unstoppable force after a 6-0 thrashing of Nikao Sokattak on Friday afternoon at the Nikao Sports field.
Matavera came out of their match with a much deserved 5-1 victory over Titikaveka at the Takitumu sports ground.
Nikao Sokattak vs Tupapa Maraerenga: Premier Men 0-6, Senior Women 0-0, U14 Boys 1-2, U14 Girls 1-0, U11 Mixed 3-0, U8 Mixed 2-0.
Takuvaine vs Puaikura: Premier Men 3-2, Senior women 0-0, U14 Boys 2-5, U11 Mixed 0-3, U8 Mixed 0-1.
Matavera vs Titikaveka: Premier Men 5-1, Senior Women 0-14, U14 Boys 1-0, U14 Girls 0-0, U11 Mixed 1-2, U8 Mixed 1-6.
U17 Men’s Division: Tupapa Maraerenga vs Matavera 1-0, Avatiu vs Puaikura 0-5, Nikao Sokattak vs Titikaveka 7-2.