Pohlen Cup Final Replay Stretches Into Double Overtime

The second round of the Pohlen Cup at the ASB Centre featured a blockbuster showdown between last year’s finalists and big victories for three of the leading contenders in 2019.

Rongotai College outlasted St Pats Town 106-99 in a double overtime thriller. In a replay of the 2018 decider, Rongotai was en-route for a comfortable victory; at one stage leading by as many as 17 points. However some spectacular shooting down the stretch from Town extended proceedings and almost flipped the result of their previous meeting.

With less than three minutes remaining Town trailed 84-77 after Jaylen To’o drained a corner three, ignoring the close attention of two defenders.

Town responded with successive buckets as Rongotai struck a barren patch.

With less than 20 seconds left Rongotai completely panicked, wildily throwing the ball from an inbound to a grateful Town receiver. Town swifty positioned the diminutive Thomas Johnson for an unmarked three attempt which he hit to tie the scores.

To’o is hard to restrain in full flight and when he was fouled, two successful free throws proppled Rongotai 86-84 ahead.

Filmone Waqabaca was the best illustration of Town’s desperation. The guard motored into the key and after consecutive backboard failures connected with the third with 0.7 seconds to spare.

Neither team shot the ball well in the first period of extra time and at 91-91 another five minutes was required to separate the fierce combatants.

Jordan Perez put Town into a rare lead with a triple, but To’o replied instanlty for Rongotai. Town failed to score with their next possession, but Lyric Samu found the net from deep as Rongotai caught fire.

Campbell-Smith collected two stubborn offensive rebounds to push the lead up to six and when To’o banked another three, Town’s brave resistance was finally broken.

In the other matches St Patrick’s College, Silverstream reversed a 17-0 deficit to foil Hutt Valley High School 81-60. Silverstream joined Tawa College in the unbeaten camp; Tawa too strong for Wellington College 101-60. Scots College thumped Upper Hutt College 109-66 to register their first win of the season.