BATHURST High School is in the box seat to claim victory over Orange High School in its opening Astley Cup tie after a strong performance on day one.
Home side Bathurst won three of the four sports on offer to take a 230 to 163 lead going into Friday’s second day of play.
A win and a draw from the soccer action at Proctor Park handed Bathurst an early advantage.
Victory in the athletics gave Orange an opportunity to pinch the lead towards the end of the day but Bathurst were an unstoppable force on the tennis court.
Orange had got themselves back within 17 points of their opponents heading to the Bathurst Tennis Centre but the hosts won nine of the 12 sets on offer to once again race clear.
“I’m really happy with the way our Bathurst High School teams played across the entire day. They’ve all put in a massive effort and went out there leaving nothing to chance,” Bathurst sports organiser Josh Lawler said.
“Our tennis players did an excellent job under the fantastic tutelage of coach Paul Abbott.
“I’m really taken aback by the score there. For them to finish 9-3 is amazing. I was expecting something closer to a 6-all or maybe a 7-5. It shows that Mr Abbott has certainly got his pairings right and got a great group of players together.
Bathurst took an early lead thanks to a 1-nil win in the boys soccer. An own goal from Orange just a couple of minutes into the match was all that separated the two schools.
Orange looked like they were going to repeat that score for the girls soccer, except in their favour, after they scored against the run of play in the first half.
The hosts nabbed a late equaliser to ensure the points were evenly split.
Those results gave Bathurst a 117-83 lead going into the athletics but Orange were about the eat into that margin.
Points across the athletics events were spread evenly until the boys and girls relays.
Orange showed their sprinting depth to claim both races to gain a valuable eight points on Bathurst.
The boys high jump went unfinished after a head injury to an Orange participant, leaving up to seven points still on offer for either school. That left Orange 55-38 winners from the athletics.
With only the tennis remaining there was little to separate the two teams – Bathurst leading the way 155 to 138.
However, Bathurst saved their biggest performance of the day for last on the tennis courts.
The big question now is whether the hosts can keep their lead by Friday’s end.