Mt Albert Grammar - runners-up 12 months ago - have become the first major casualties on Day Two of the 2014 NZRL National Secondary Schools Tournament at Papakura.
After falling to archrivals St Paul's College in an opening crossover match, MAGS suffered a second and more crippling 23-14 defeat at the hands of Aorere College today.
Leading 10-4 at halftime, they seemed to have the contest well in hand, but were unable to hold off the resurgent South Aucklanders down the stretch.
With defending champions Kelston Boys High barely surviving a shock from Manurewa High on Day One, this latest result showed a closing gap between the top seeds and their challengers in the tournaments premiership.
With just one game remaining in pool play, winless Mt Albert cannot reach the semifinals, after Aorere's second victory of the week.
Kelston made no race of their contest against tournament hosts Papakura High (54-0), while St Paul's College and Manurewa also lived on to their rankings.
But the West Auckland side will face another tough task tomorrow, when they meet a rampant Otahuhu College, 38-4 winners over Rotorua Boys High today.
Wesley College have emerged as the team to watch in the development grade, overrunning Mt Roskill Grammar 44-12. They are now the top scorers after two rounds of the event (112 points).
Francis Douglas College, Papatoetoe High and Aranui High are the other unbeaten second-tier sides.
NZRL NATIONAL SECONDARY SCHOOLS TOURNAMENT
Bruce Pulman Park, Papakura
Tuesday, September 2
Otahuhu College 38 (Ariel Tusiane 3, Joseph Afemui, Phoenix Hunt & Nicholas Aiga tries; Tusiane 2 & Richard Nikau 2 goals) Rotorua BHS 4 (Viliami tosi try); HT: 12-4
Kelston BHS 54 (James Mafi 3, Charlie Kaipati 2, Peter Scanlan, Tipu Lisati, Delaney Chaney, Utah Ioka & Nick Iui-Tosi tries; Zion Ioka 4, Austin Mausitama 2 & Braden Brown goals) Papakura HS 0; HT: 28-0
Manurewa HS 42 (Michael Saili-Motu 2, Feleti Naeata 2, Kenneth Mataafa, Nanga Iloa & Henry Fata tries; Denzel Tutakitoa 7 goals) Western Springs College 22 (Ahotau Kali 2, Malrick Lavea & Nikheil Bhana tries; Mikaere Marshall 3 goals); HT: 22-16
Tokoroa HS 22 (Isaiah Cooper-Tetevano 2, Haukainga Menhennet & Montell Maea tries; Manuia Alaelua 3 goals) Westlake BHS 16 (Nafe Helu, Zae Wallace & Zane Carbines tries; Wallace 2 goals); HT: 12-10
St Paul's College 26 (Fina Payne 2, James Manoa, Sam Filimoeatu & Chris Sio tries; Cody Mahuika 2 & Payne goals) Southern Cross Campus 16 (Sili Ulugia, Gordon Petersen & Unaloto Vaipulu tries; Jan Sepuloni 2 goals); HT: 16-10
Aorere College 23 (Ezra Pange, Maka Faingaa, Tyler Mohi & Lene Paila-Tito tries; Frost Mika 2 & Peteroni Lilomaiava goals; Aluji Pange field goal) Mt Albert Grammar 14 (Tereimana Parangi 2 & John Talisa tries; Hakaraia goal); HT: 4-10
Whangarei BHS 26 (James Cherrington 2, Caleb Aekins, Michael Williams & Tipara Jobe tries; Journee Cassidy 3 goals) Pakuranga College 16 (Gerald van Wyk, Luke Armiger & Rohand Sund tries; Armiger 2 goals); HT: 8-4
Northcote College 18 (Nat Law, Willie Fokokalafi, Shawn Kumar & Isaiah Rouslton tries; Taine Neho goal) Rosehill College 16 (Edge Tuatineiti-Watson, Raymond Alonui & Darryl Hemopo tries; Nathan Linford 2 goals); HT: 10-10
Papatoetoe HS 42 (Iese Aigs 2, Nuku Ngere 2, Kelepi Holi, Charles Makasani, Foga Autagavaia, Michael Laulu & Robert Meleisea tries; Autagavaia 2 & Aiga goals) One Tree Hill College 6 (Gabriel Aerenga try; Walima Vila goal); HT: 18-6
Wesley College 44 (Wetere Pompey, Sam Halunga, Ma Latai, Isaac Underwood, Daniel Vili, Sione Koloamatangi, Xavier Johanssn & Ilaisa Loholoho tries; Aria Cerei 6 goals)
Mt Roskill Grammar 12 (Jonah Nafahu, Tom Ale & Aloisio Lui tries); HT: 20-12
Aranui HS 34 (Cyrus Timo Latu 2, Oli Tailua 2, Junior Peneli, Fa'aaliga Tailua & Clark Morgan tries; Timo Latu 3 goals) Greymouth HS 12 (Trent McMillan 2 & Bailey McPike tries); HT: 18-12
Francis Douglas College 44 (Jonathon Fidow 2, Henry Miles 2, Tyler Feakins, Josh Perrett, Brandon Martin & Bryn Chard tries; Eli Kneepkens 6 goals) Taita College 14 (Jarvis Tuia-Mendoza, Ezra McCulloch & Nathan Hermans tries; Ryan Pene-Stevens goal); HT: 30-10