OPEN running rugby was the call of the day when First XV teams from The Armidale School and Sydney Boys High met at TAS on Saturday, with the hosts coming out victors 31-7.
The two teams met in the seventh round of the GPS Third Grade competition, but also as part of the annual High visit to TAS to compete in five other disciplines, including rifle shooting, tennis, basketball, football and debating.
The final result belied the strong opposition put up by High, which included three players from the Combined High Schools First XV, while the TAS performance reflected a balanced contribution by all 15 players, according to coach Jamie Moore.
“Our ability to identify and preserve space so our outside men can use this has been a highlight of the team this year and this game was no exception,” he said.
“Once the boys settled in, they were able to dominate the breakdown, find holes in High’s defence and capitalise on that.”
Number 14 Ben Caskey put the first points on the board for TAS and converted his own try and, not long after, one by outside centre Joel Blackwell.
Fullback Wayne Mumbulla crossed in the corner before High put its only points on the board with a converted try in the first half, and the scoreline was 19-7 at oranges.
During the second half the TAS side strengthened its resolve, with Caskey bagging his second try of the day.
While unable to convert, he slotted an extra two on the back of a try by Tom Lane under the posts in the final minutes of the game.
The win keeps TAS at equal first place on the GPS Thirds competition alongside Sydney Grammar School and Scots.
By coincidence, two of the other three games in Saturday’s round also finished 31-7.
TAS not meets St Ignatius College, Riverview in Sydney this weekend for the final match of the season, before a final-round bye.