West Taieri and Crescent played out a ding-dong bout at the weekend, as the battle for Southern Region rugby semifinal spots heated up.

There were 110 points scored at Kaitangata, West Taieri winning 67-43.

The Pigs flew out of the blocks and had pretty much wrapped the game up at 36-5 midway through the first half.

Crescent finally managed to hold on to the ball and fought its way back into the game.

West Taieri led 36-24 at the break with more attacking footy predicted in the second half.

The predictions were right, and tackling took a back seat as both sides scored some fantastic tries in an entertaining half.

West Taieri never looked like throwing the lead away and finished with two penalty tries thanks to a dominant scrum.

Toko produced the game of the round at Clydevale.

Toko beat Clutha Valley 29-17 to take the McIntosh Cup and the Speight’s Jug back to Milton as well as five valuable points.

The away team started strongly and rushed out to a 17-0 lead thanks to its strong forward runners and excellent support play.

Valley was slow out of the blocks, paying the price for poor defensive line-speed and sloppy first-up tackles and trailed 22-5 at halftime.

Valley rose to the occasion in the second half and scored the opening try but could not rein in Toko, which scored again to put the game to bed with 10 minutes remaining.

This loss means Valley drops from second place to fifth, such is the closeness of the top five teams.

Heriot jumped into second place on the table with a 36-15 win over Owaka at Heriot.

The first half was controlled by the travelling side for the most part. Owaka’s set piece was dominant and its defence held firm, and when it got the ball in the right areas of the field, Owaka looked dangerous.

Heriot went into halftime 14-10 ahead thanks to a late, opportunistic try from flanker Sam Edh.

Heriot upped the ante in the second half and the home backs enjoyed space and room to move.

Despite its pack still going backwards, Heriot’s superior fitness and desire showed, and it claimed an important bonus-point win.

Clutha bounced back from disappointment last weekend by beating Clinton 45-14 in front of a large Clinton crowd on its club day.

Clutha was too strong for the most part with its backs enjoying plenty of freedom. Clinton played well at times, but could not get any kind of momentum, or get its backs involved enough.