The Golden Lions claimed a 46-25 victory over Eastern Province in their first game of the U18 Craven Week in Paarl on Monday.
The Johannesburg-based team were helped by a powerful performance from their forwards, with two of their loose trio claiming first-half tries.
EP took an early 6-0 lead thanks to two penalties from centre Juandre Liebenberg, before the Lions hit back when flank Izak Esterhuizen drove over the line.
The Lions then went ahead after hooker Karel Zowitsky showed great strength to hand off a couple of tacklers and score.
In a match where the lead changed several times, EP went in front again for a short period when lock Nahum Johannes was pushed over the line, before No 8 Ryben Dupont scored from the back of a maul.
However, the Lions got themselves back into the game through a try from Franco Schutte and then took a 26-20 half-time lead when scrumhalf Zihan Coetzee went over from close range.
The Lions then started to take control of the match when lock Emmanuel Tshituka showed great pace to sprint clear and score in the corner, minutes into the second half.
Muzilikaze Manyike knocked over a penalty to give his team a 14-point lead, before the Lions fullback burst through a gap in the defence to score.
EP responded when flyhalf Nivan Pietersen collected a loose pass and offloaded to big prop Basile Malesu, who powered over the line, but their hopes were dashed when Schutte made a break in midfield and Lions lock Junior White fell over the line to seal the win.
Golden Lions– Tries: Izak Esterhuizen, Karel Zowitsky, Franco Schutte, Zihan Coetzee, Emmanuel Tshituka, Muzi Manyike, Junior White. Conversions: Declan Raubenheimer (4). Penalty: Manyike.
Eastern Province – Tries: Nahum Jonannes, Ryben Dupont, Basile Malesu. Conversions: Juandre Liebenberg (2). Penalties: Liebenberg (2).
Photo: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images