September 20, 2015
Eagles Lose To Samoa 25-16 To Begin Rugby World Cup 2015
There was hard hitting and sloppy play as the USA Men’s Eagles lost their initial Rugby World Cup Pool B match against Samoa 25-16 in Brighton, England.
It took only one minute before Thretton Palamo crashed into Rey Lee-Lo on attack, setting the physical tone of the match. Lee-Lo needed to leave the pitch for a concussion protocol, but did return eight minutes later. Mike Stanley replaced him in the interim.
In a match marred by many USA penalties, Samoa took advantage of the USA not rolling away seven minutes into the match. Tusi Pisi slotted the penalty and gave Samoa a 3-0 lead.
Samoa continued to maintain much of the early match attack (7o% possession in first 20 minutes) and the USA defense, finally surrendered the first try by fullback Tim Nanai-Williams. (20′) Tusi Pisi’s conversion was wide left. (8-0 Samoa)
Jack Lam found a gap in the USA defense and in the tackle, Peterson was penalized for holding him. Pisi slotted another penalty kick. (Samoa 11-0, 22″)
The USA generated their own excitement when a Samoa Lineout was stolen by the USA and Manoa’s quick ball to MacGinty created a numbers issue for Samoa. This resulted in offloads from MacGinty to Kelly to Wyles for the try. MacGinty converted and the score was now 11-8 (33′)
Just prior to the end of the first half, Petri came across the ruck and this added to Samoa’s score with another Pisi penalty kick. (38′)
The USA would have one last scoring opportunity going 7 phases on attack before knocking on to end the half. Samoa had a 14-8 lead.
The second half began, with Samoa’s Tuilagi apparently scoring a try, however the TMO revealed that he had knock on. (44′) Two minutes later a grub kick ahead resulted in a Ofisa Treviranus try. The conversion struck the post and went wide. (Samoa 19-8).
It seemed that every time the USA had some momentum that a penalty would disrupt the flow. A high tackle by Fenoglio had Pisi tack on another 3 points. (22-8, 49′)
Samoa would soon after return the favor and MacGinty added a penalty kick. (22-11, 52′)
Ngwenya broke a tackle and streamed down the sidelines deep into the Red zone. This effort was spoiled however. That was a key point where the USA had an opportunity to get back into the match. Samoa would continue to take advantage of USA penalties and Mike Stanley added the last points for Samoa with a penalty kick. (25-11, 69′)
Soon after the USA’s Chris Baumann would barrel over for a try. The conversion was missed left by MacGinty. (25-16, 73′) That was the way the score would end with Samoa winning 25-16.
Samoa v USA: Officials, Scoring & Lineups
Referee: George Clancy; Ass’t Ref: Jaco Peyper, Frederico Anselmi; TV Match Official: Graham Hughes
Samoa: 25 Tries: Nanai-Williams, Treviranus Penalty kicks: Tusi Pisi -4, Stanley
USA: 16 Tries: Wyles, Baumann Penalties: MacGinty-2
Samoa (Ranked 12th): HC Stephen Betham Starters: 1 Sakaria “Zak” Taulafo, 2 Ole Avei, 3 Anthony Perenise, 4 Filo Paulo, 5 Joe Tekori, 6 Maurie Fa’asavalu, 7 Jack Lam, 8 Ofisa Treviranus (c), 9 Kahn Fotuali’i 10 Tusi Pisi, 11 Alesana Tuilagi, 12 Rey Lee-Lo, 13 Paul Perez, 14 Ken Pisi, 15 Tim Nanai-Williams Replacements: 16 Viliamu Afatia (P) 17 Motu Matu’u (H) 18 Census Johnson (P) 19 Faifili Leveave (F) 20 Alafoti Faosilivia (F) 21 Vavao Afemai (SH) 22 Mike Stanley (FH) 23 Fa’atoina Autagavaia (FB/W)
USA (Ranked 15th): HC Mike Tolkin Starters: 1 Eric Fry, 2 Zach Fenoglio, 3 Titi Lamositele, 4 hayden Smith, 5 Greg Peterson, 6 Al McFarland, 7 Andrew Durutalo, 8 Samu Manoa, 9 Mike Petri, 10 AJ MacGinty, 11 Chris Wyles (c), 12 Thretton Palamo, 13 Seamus Kelly, 14 Taku Ngwenga, 15 Blaine Scully Replacements: 16 Phil Thiel (H), 17 Ollie Kilifi (P), 18 Chris Baumann (P), 19 Cam Dolan (L), 20 Danny Barrett (8,F), 21 Shalom Suniula (SH/FH), 22 Folau Niua (C), 23 Brett Thompson (W)