September 26, 2016
Philly-Whitemarsh Rugby Edges Doylestown
Logos: Philadelphia-Whitemarsh and Doylestown Rugby
Philadelphia-Whitemarsh Rugby Club Release: Kyle Antonian, Sept. 26, 2016
Since moving up to D2 in 2014, Philly-Whitemarsh has had the number of local rival, Doylestown. Three matches. Three victories. The last match was played on Halloween and it proved to be a nightmare on elm street for the Dragons. 59-5 was the scoreline. Coming into Week Three, Doylestown was looking to prove itself and trying not to succumb to an 0-2 hole early in the 2016 season. PW, confident in its past performances, looked to roll what was becoming its, to put it nicely, baby brother.
The overly confident smiles on the Philly-Whitemarsh team were quickly wiped away early in the match. Pouncing on a backline knock-on, the Dragons raced toward the try line for a 7-0 lead. The message was clear from Doylestown. We are here to play. Our forwards are big and domineering in the scrum. Our backs are fast and will cut through you like razors. Beware. Philly-Whitemarsh apparently didn’t get the message as the backs shrugged off the mistake with a sideline attack that found Brian Engle, who was braving a hamstring injury, in for a cool 7.
The match turned out to be a backs duel, with Doylestown calling the shots in the first half. The Dragons ran hard and made the PW’s backline defense resemble swiss cheese. The game seemed to be getting away, as Doylestown ran in two more tries. PW hang on by a thread, as temperatures ran hot in the huddle at the try line, after the Dragons scored their 3rd. It looked like the day was lost. Fortunately, PW was down but not out. Louis Tulio scored a crucial try in the corner that buoyed PW’s spirits.
1st Half: 19-12 Doylestown
The rejuvenated PW team went on the attack immediately. Rhys Bowdich brought his Australian grit and drove several defenders into the try zone for a moral raising score. The angle of the conversion attempt proved too for Joe Baker, who kicked the ball wide of the posts. Down two points, Philly-Whitemarsh knew it was close to sealing the comeback. However, Doylestown had other plans. The match went back and forth as both sides made line breaks that were ended either by heroic defense or silly mistakes. Doylestown parried PW’s advances and counter punched when it could. At minute 65, Baked looked to seal the match with a 40m penalty kick, an attempt that proved just how stingy the Dragons’ defense was. Unfortunately, the radar was not on and the ball fell to the earth, as did the hopes of everyone wearing blue and red on the field and sidelines. Despite the miss, PW was still in the redzone. Phase after phase the forwards inched closer, but it still seemed a bridge too far. The script writers couldn’t have done better though, as Eric Miller took a pass from Captain Bob and cut through the defense for the match winning try, and thus redeeming himself for a poor defensive showing. Doylestown tried to retake the lead in the remaining 10 minutes, but PW said not today.
Final Score: Philly-Whitemarsh 24 – 19 Doylestown
PW Try Scorers: Engle 1, Tulio 1, Bowdich 1, Miller 1
Conversions: Baker 2/4
Penalty Kicks: Baker 0/2
Man of the Match: Bob Haller