The Glendale Raptors hosted the San Diego Legion at Infinity Park on Saturday, March 16. The Legion came back to score on the final play for a 28 all draw.
The Raptors are in fourth place in the MLR standings with a 3-2-2 record with 23 points and play the third-place Rugby United New York in Brooklyn on March 24.
San Diego Legion has a 4-2-1 record with 22 points and is in fifth place with the top five teams in the league separated by 4 points in the standings. The Legion has a bye and will travel to Seattle for a match on March 31.
The San Diego Legion struck first with a try by Jordan Manihera after a 5-meter scrum. Joe Pietersen then slotted the kick for a 7-0 lead.
The Glendale Raptors answered right back with a John Ryberg try in the left corner, with Will Magie converting from touch.
Faka’osi Pifeleti added a second Legion try from a lineout with Pietersen extending the lead to 14-7. The Raptors tried to back with a penalty kick by Magie, but it was off the mark and the Legion had a lead at the break.
A discipline issue by Keni Nasoqeqe resulted in him being sent to the bin. The Raptors took advantage of numbers with a Malon Al-Jiboori offload to Shaun Davies to Mika Kruse for a try. Will Magie then knotted the match at 14 all.
Glendale then took a 21 -14 lead off a John Ryberg run and an inside offload to Shaun Davies for a try and a Magie conversion. The Legion answered back with a Dylan Audsley try and Pietersen conversion to level the match again, 21 all.
The Raptors added a 4th bonus point try from a lineout in close from a Dylan Taikoto-Simpson no-look pass to Harley Davidson for the try, with Magie slotting the kick to lead 28-21.
A Mike Te’o offload to JP Duplessis for a try on the final play allowed Pietersen to slot the kick for a 28 all draw.
The Glendale Raptors have been involved in the only two draws in MLR history.
Man of the Match honors went to Dylan Taikato-Simpson for the Raptors and to Paddy Ryan for the Legion.
Squads with Player Article Links & Match Preview
Glendale Raptors: 1 Kelepi Fifita 2 Zach Fenoglio 3 Blake Rogers 4 Casey Rock 5 Luke White (VC) 6 Brendan Daly 7 Hanco Germishuys 8 Malon Al-Jiboori 9 Shaun Davies (C) 10 Will Magie 11 Harley Davidson 12 Robbie Petzer 13 Mika Kruse 14 John Ryberg 15 Dylan Taikato-Simpson 16 Chad Gough 17 Marco Fepulea’i 18 Max Lum 19 William Munro 20 Connor Cook 21 Mickey Bateman 22 Ata Malifa 23 Chad London
San Diego Legion: 1 Faka’osi Pifeleti 2 Deon Muir 3 Paddy Ryan (VC) 4 Siaosi Mahoni 5 Keni Nasoqeqe 6 Psalm Wooching 7 Devin Short 8 Jordan Manihera 9 Nate Augspurger 10 Joe Pietersen (C) 11 Conor Kearns 12 JP du Plessis 13 Dylan Audsley 14 Mike Te’o15 Kyle Rogers 16 Kapeli Pifeleti17 Pat Blair 18 Aaron Mitchell 19 Jasa Veremalua 20 Drew Gaffney 21 Nick Boyer 22 Tai Enosa 23 Nick Lupian + Head Coach Rob Hoadley