July 2, 2016
Ohio Aviators Host San Diego Breakers at The Fortress
Photo: PRO Rugby
The first place Ohio Aviators play the San Diego Breakers this Sunday home at 3:00pm ET. Ohio enters the match with a 6-3 record, but are undefeated when playing at home at “The Fortress.”
In the four matches the Aviators have played at Obetz, they have scored over 50 points each time and this has become a source of pride. Last week, they set a PRO Rugby record when they scored 71 points against San Francisco, with 11 tries, while 9 individual players had tries.
The San Diego Breakers have a 4-4 record and are in third place in the League. The Breakers had a bye week last week after losing three consecutive matches. The last two matches were during the International Test window when they missed several players that were playing for the Eagles and Canada. Ohio also missed a couple of players, but that will not be an issue this week.
The Ohio Aviators have been clicking on all cylinders and have made one change in their starting XV. Taylor Howden returns at flyhalf shifting Zac Mizell to fullback. It is also a great option to have Eagle prop Angus MacLellan and Canada flanker Kyle Ballie as reserves.
The San Diego Breakers have made five changes to their starting XV from their match two weeks ago. They benefit from having three of their International players return as starters. Joe Taufete’e and Jake Ilnicki will play prop and Mikey Te’o will look to attack from fullback. Phil Mackenzie switches to wing, while Andrew Suniula returns at inside center after an injury. In the forwards, Ian Carpenter will be at lock, while Bruce Thomas is a flanker. Both players were reserves two weeks ago.
The Breakers reserves have also been strengthened with the return of Jean Baptiste Gobelet and Tom Bliss returns from injury.
The teams will need to minimize penalties as the Breakers have the leading point scorer in the League in Kurt Morath with 104 points. Shaun Davies has also proven to be a very reliable kicker for the Aviators and is fourth in the League with 62 points.
The Aviators lead the League with 359 point scored and also have the four top try scorers in Spike Davis with 10 tries, Sebastián Kalm (8), Filippo Ferrarini (6), and Dominic Waldouck (5). Alex Elkins also is a threat on wing and has four tries.
The Life of Professional Rugby Coaches & Players
Have you read the article and listened to the interviews as Ohio Aviator coaches and players discuss life in professional rugby in the U.S.? Glimpse at PRO Rugby in the U.S. From Ohio Aviators Coaches & Players
Match recaps of the last Ohio Aviator & San Diego Breakers Matches
Ohio Aviator June 26 match against San Francisco Ohio Aviators Leave San Francisco Rush in their Jetstream
San Diego June 18th match against San Francisco Rush San Francisco Rush Edge San Diego Breakers
Ohio Aviators: 1 Jamie Mackintosh 2 Dylan Fawsitt 3 Demecus Beach 4 Ryan McTiernan 5 Pierce Dargan 6 Filippo Ferrarini 7 Sebastián Kalm 8 Riekert Hattingh 9 Shaun Davies 10 Taylor Howden 11 Alex Elkins 12 Dominic Waldouck 13 Roland Suniula 14 Aaron “Spike” Davis 15 Zac Mizell 16 Chris Kunkel 17 Angus MacLellan 18 Kyle Baillie 19 Allan Hanson 20 Robbie Shaw 21 Chad Joseph 22 Derrek Van Klein 23 Ahmad Harajly Coaches: Head Coach-Paule Barford Assistant Coaches: Paul Holmes, Eamonn Hogan Manager: Tom Rooney
San Diego Breakers: 1 Joe Taufete’e 2 Mikey Sosene-Feagai 3 Jake Ilnicki 4 Ian Carpenter 5 Tai Tuisamoa 6 Bruce Thomas 7 Cecil Garber 8 Sione Tuihalamaka 9 Charlie Purdon 10 Kurt Morath 11 Phil Mackenzie 12 Andrew Suniula 13 Ryan Matyas 14 Pono Haitsuka 15 Mikey Te’o 16 Brice Schilling 17 Mason Petersen 18 Epi Kalamani 19 Jean Baptiste Gobelet 20 Chris Turori 21 Tom Bliss 22 Kalei Konrad 23 Ben Leatigaga Coaches: Head Coach – Ray Egan Assistant Coaches: Matt Hawkins, Rob Hoadley Manager: Sean Lindersmith