Rugby United New York spoiled Austin Elite Rugby’s first match at Toyota Field in San Antonio, Texas winning 19-11 on Saturday, March 30. The match was the CBS Sports Network Game of the Week.
Austin Elite Rugby has been an improved team in recent weeks. They were on the brink of winning last week against NOLA Gold before losing on the final play and also played well against the Seattle Seawolves. RUNY came into the match with a 6-1 record and exited 7-1 and are first place in Major League Rugby pending the outcome of the other weekend matches. Austin Elite Rugby despite playing well again, falls to 0-8.
During the first half, Rugby United New York had an advantage in the scrums, while Austin Elite stole a couple of lineouts. The match has been a physical battle.
RUNY struck first from a lineout as the ball was thrown to James Rochford and back to Mike Brown and to Marcus Walsh, who raced down blind for a try to lead 5-0. The conversion by Harry Bennett bounced off the left upright.
Austin Elite Rugby answered back after a rare RUNY scrum penalty with Mickael Romera slotting the kick to cut the lead to 5-3.
Prior to the break, RUNY mauled from a 5-meter lineout and after a penalty advantage, elected a 5-meter scrum. Austin Elite racked up scrum penalties and was warned by the referee. The 4th scrum resulted in a turnover with the half ending 5-3 to RUNY.
A RUNY penalty in the 52nd minute gave Austin Elite a lead for the first time in the match, as Romera slotted a kick for a 6-5 lead.
RUNY answered back with a try by James Denise in close with Chris Mattina converting to reclaim the lead, 12-6. RUNY had a chance to add to the lead but elected to kick to touch instead of at goal. The ensuing lineout went long and was lost.
A Marcelo Torrealba break then ended with a try by Reece Czarnecki in the left corner for a with JP Aguirre’s kick wide.
RUNY added another score after Ross Decon offload to Mike Petri resulted in a try. Mattina then converted to push the final score to 19-11.
Squads with Player Article Links & Match Preview
Austin Elite Rugby: 1 LaRome White 2 Tiaan Erasmus 3 Juan Echeverria 4 Ben Mitchell (C) 5 Josh Larsen (VC) 6 Rikus Zwart 7 Moe Abdelmonem 8 Travis Larsen 9 Mickaël Romera 10 Rodrigo Sliva 11 Sione Fangaiuiha 12 Andres Vilaseca 13 JP Aguirre 14 Aidan McMullan 15 Soheyl Jaoudat 16 Dominique Bailey 17 Chris Schade 18 Brendan Rams 19 Dylan Pieterse 20 Kyle Breytenbach 21 Marcelo Torrealba 22 Doug Fraser 23 Reece Czarnecki + Head Coach Alain Hyardet
Rugby United New York: 1 James Rochford 2 Mike Brown 3 Paddy Ryan 4 Trevor Cassidy 5 Nate Brakeley (C) 6 John Quill 7 James Denise 8 Matt Hughston 9 Marcus Walsh10 Harry Bennett 11Gavan D’Amore Morrison 12 Mark O’Keeffe 13 Chris Mattina 14 Seimou Smith15 Ben Foden16 Callum Mackintosh17 Anthony Parry 18 Chris Sullivan 19 Matt Wirken 20 Ross Deacon 21 Mike Petri 22 Mike St. Claire 23 Luke Hume + Head Coach Mike Tolkin