A stirring fightback late in the piece left Timaru with day one honours, after Roncalli College controlled most of the play in their senior two-day cricket match at Ashbury Park 6.
Another century from Ed Kilbee on Saturday might not be enough to get Roncalli first innings points, as they stumbled to 149 for 7 at the close of play in pursuit of Timaru’s 193.
In other matches, Star’s dismal season continued after they were all out for 26 at the Temuka Oval.
Not one of their batsman made double figures, as Temuka’s opening bowlers, Kevin Teahen and Nathan McNicol both grabbed five-wicket bags. Earlier, Temuka were bowled out for 68, which proved plenty of runs to get first innings points.
Celtic went about their business with comfort.
Spinner Sam Carlaw took 5 for 50 to help dismiss Waimate for 150, and then opener Jeremy Liddy clubbed 97 and James Laming 49 to give Celtic a lead of 80, as they declared their first innings at 230 for 5.
Stand-in Timaru captain Greg Hull showed faith in his openers by batting first on a damp morning, but he was rewarded as Josh Smallridge and Gerald Piddock survived the first hour, thanks to some determined batting and poor catching from the schoolboys.
The spin of Ben Simpson bowled both Smallridge (22) and Piddock (30) after both looked set to kick on.
Dhananjaya Murari held the top-order together with a brisk 41, which included several audacious paddles and sweeps off the Roncalli quick bowlers. Roncalli dropped more than a dozen catches, with stand-in wicket-keeper Adam Beck having a tough time of it.
Timaru’s run-rate was never above three an over until Zane Sanders (29) and Logan Taylor (33) got some quick-fire runs.
Hull was controversially caught on the boundary, despite Harry Millar’s feet flirting with the boundary marker, and Timaru had to settle for a total below 200 from their 60 overs, when they had to enforce a compulsory declaration.
Simpson finished with 3 for 40, while Tahir Afridi bagged 3 for 32 and seamer Alex McDuff also managed two wickets.
Roncalli’s response was flying at more than five run an over with openers Kilbee and Ryan De Joux at the crease. The pair put on 85.
De Joux departed for 23, but Kilbee carried on.
He brought up his century in less than two hours and with 139 as the team total.
Kilbee eventually fell to the spin of Murari for 109 and the momentum of the match turned.
The last hour of play was the critical point of the day. The last 11 overs produced two runs and the last six were maidens.
The spin of Sanders and Murari got Timaru back in the match.
Sanders finished with 4 for 32 from 16 overs and Murari 3 for 23 from 13 overs.
At stumps, Roncalli required 44 runs with three wickets remaining for first innings points.
Star’s Todd Elliotte finished with figures of 4 for 0 from 4 overs to help skittle Temuka for 68 on a damp pitch. Play was delayed for more than two hours.
Star’s reply never got going, and they were all out for 26 in the 17th over.
Temuka ended the day at 16 for 2 in their second innings.
Celtic will be looking to pressure Waimate into submission next Saturday, after they ended play with a 67-run lead.
Earlier, 53 from Hayden Matthews had got Waimate through to 150.
The spin of Sam Carlaw kept Waimate grounded, though Celtic will be concerned main strike bowler Glenn Matthews managed only one over before succumbing to a side-strain.
Waimate got the prized scalp of Craig Davies for just 8, but it was his other opener Liddy, who anchored the innings.
He found good support from James Laming 49 and Dan Laming 33, as they cruised passed Waimate’s total and declared with an eventual lead of 80 runs.
Waimate were 13 without loss in their second innings at stumps.