Edendale Magpies second five-eighth Jeremy McLeod scored every point for his team in its 14-7 win in the Southlandwide division 1 rugby final over its biggest foe, Wyndham, at Wyndham on Saturday.
Wyndham had been the strongest team in the competition and had won two of the three games the finalists had played earlier this season.
The long-running rivalry made for a fast-paced game and both teams were eager to establish dominance.
Twenty minutes in, McLeod made a move towards the tryline and successfully put the ball on the line, and followed up with the conversion.
Wyndham’s Mark Kingsbury bit back with a try that stemmed from a lineout just before halftime. The successful conversion was made by Joe McRae.
Halftime huddles fired both teams up more and within minutes of play resuming, McLeod intercepted a pass from Wyndham and ran the ball 80m to the tryline for Edendale’s second try.
Again, McLeod converted it. The Magpies held a 14-7 lead which they maintained.
Wyndham held a lot of the possession but relentless defence gave Edendale the upper hand.
McLeod, Edendale’s star player, said it was a hard-fought game right to the 80th minute.
“It was a classic local derby, played in front of a huge crowd.”
The team walked away with the win because of its unreal defence, he said.
“To hold them [Wyndham] out was just brilliant. They kept firing at us .. but we held them out.”
McLeod said the Magpies celebrated in style at the clubrooms.
Coach Casey Roberston said Wyndham played well. .
“The forwards did really well.
“The boys are pretty gutted. It was so close and that makes the loss even worse,” he said.
The supporters had “stuck around to support the boys” who had still achieved much in getting to the final, he said.
Scores: Edendale 14 (J McLeod 2 tries, 2 con), Wyndham 7 (M Kingsbury try, J McRae con). Halftime: 7-7.