Seattle Seawolves Hold Off Rugby United New York Comeback

Rugby United New York stormed back in the second half, but came up short, losing to the Seattle Seawolves 38-31at MCU Park on May 11. Both teams are in the hunt for the playoffs. Prior to the match, FDNY defeated the NYPD 15-7.

Both Rugby United New York and the Seattle Seawolves have 9-4 records, however, the Seawolves have 46 points and are in third place in the Major League Rugby standings, while the Roosters at in fourth with 44 points.

The race for the four playoff spots is a close one with three remaining matches and will likely be decided the final weekend of the regular season on June 2.

On May 19 Rugby United New York will host Austin Elite Rugby at 1 pm at MCU Park, while the Seattle Seawolves travel to Glendale to face the Raptors on May 18.

Rugby United New York vs Seattle Seawolves Match Recap

Rugby United New York controlled the initial possession of the match as they advanced to within 5-meters of in-goal before a lineout was stolen by the Seawolves, allowing Ben Cima to clear. The team attacked again going through multiple phases before Cathal Marsh lost the ball forward in contact for a 5-meter Seawolves scrum, which allowed Cima to clear again.

The Roosters controlled the possession during the first ten minutes of the match, but ultimately Seattle struck first from a lineout 15-meters out with Mat Turner slicing through a seam for a try and a Brock Staller converting to lead 7-0.

The Seawolves extended their lead to 14-0 after a try by Riekert Hattingh and then to 21-0 after counterattacking from a Ben Foden kick with Turner showing his sevens form as he evaded a tackler for his second try.

RUNY answered back after a quick tap after a Seawolves penalty for being offsides. Paddy Ryan barrelled over the line for a try and Cathal MArsh slotted the conversion to cut the lead to 21-7.

In the final two minutes prior to the break, Brock Staller slotted a penalty goal and Shalom Suniula drew in a defender and offloaded to JP Smith for a try and a Staller conversion for a commanding 31-7 lead.

Second Half

Rugby United New York came into a second half as a determined team with Cathal Marsh exxecuting a cross kick to Will Leonard for a try to cut the lead to 31-14 after Marsh’s conversion.  A try by Connor Wallace-Sims in the right corner and a Marsh conversion then cut it to 31-21.

The Seawolves answered back with a try by Phil Mack and another Staller conversion to extend the lead to 38-21.

The Roosters did not falter as Dylan Fawsitt scored from a maul to gain the team a bonus point, while cutting the lead to 38-26 with seven minutes remaining. Marsh then executed another crosskick to Luke Hume, with Fawsitt finishing to move to within a converted try at 38-31.

Would RUNY finish the comeback? Cathal Marsh took the team to within 5-meters of in-goal, but a knock on soon after gave the Seawolves a 5-meter scrum. Cima then kicked to touch for the Seattle win.

With the win, the Seawolves moved back into third place with 46 points. Rugby United New York retained fourth place, picking up two bonus points for 44 points. Pending the outcome of the match between the Toronto Arrows and the Utah Warriors, the Arrows could move into third place with a bonus point win, or stay in fifth place with a loss.

More match photos are available on Keith Killeen‘s Facebook page.


RUNY: 1 James Rochford 2 Dylan Fawsitt 3 Paddy Ryan 4 Trevor Cassidy 5 Nate Brakeley 6  Matt Hughston 7 John Quill 8 Ross Deacon 9 Mike Petri 10 Cathal Marsh 11 Mike St. Claire 12 Will Leonard 13 Mark O’Keeffe 14 Connor Wallace-Sims 15 Ben Foden 16 Sean McNulty 17 Anthony Parry 18 Chris Sullivan 19 Alex MacDonald 20 Kyle Sumsion 21 Marcus Walsh 22 Harry Bennett 23 Luke Hume

Seattle Seawolves: 1 Djustice Sears-Duru 2 Stephan Coetzee 3 Tim Metcher 4 Api Naikatini 5 Jeremy Lenaerts 6 Brad Tucker 7 Nakai Penny 8 Riekert Hattingh 9  JP Smith 10 Ben Cima 11 Sequoyah Burke-Combs 12 Shalom Suniula 13 Roland Suniula 14 Brock Staller 15 Mat Turner 16 Dan Trierweiler 17 Kellen Gordon 18 Ryan Youngman 19 Samu Manoa 20 Eric Duechle 21 Phil Mack 22 George Barton 23 Dion Crowder

FDNY vs NYPD Match Recap

The match between the New York Fire Department and the New York Police Department preceded the MLR match between Rugby United New York and the Seattle Seawolves at MCU Park on May 11.

For FDNY Rugby it was a successful one with the team jumping out to a 15-0 lead at the break on the strength of three tries. NYPD came back in the second half with a penalty try for a final of 15-7.

Both teams gathered for a photo at the end of the match and shared in post-match festivities.

Rugby United New York is a huge supporter of rugby in the Empire GU. The team donated a portion of the ticket proceed to the FDNY Foundation’s Jolly 51 Fund.

NYPD will be giving money raised from the match to the P.B.A. Widow and Children’s Fund.

Photo; Carol D’Allara

FDNY: 1 EMT Jeff Monsen Queens Tactical Task Force 2 FF Pat Fiffe Ladder 33 3 FF Keith Rogozinski Ladder 16 4 FF Greg Aguelle Engine 211 5 FF Brendan Murphy Engine 310 6 FF Bryan Amberry Engine 235 7 FF Nick Anzalone Ladder 9 8 FF Brendan Fitzgerald Engine 285 9 FF Eddie Velten Engine 255 10 FF Ricky Palmer Ladder 113 11 FF Danny Murtagh Ladder 159 12 FF Tommy Amberry Engine 217 13 FF Matt Shea Engine 249 14 EMT Joe Wolfer Station 47 15 FF Paul Pace Engine 67 Reserves Lt. Adam Lynch HazMat Ops, EMT Dennis Abbruzzi, FF Pat Brady Engine 227, EMT John Bright EMS HAZTAC, FF Russ Carlson Engine 283, Firefighter John Keegan Ladder 146, Lt. Ron Kemly Divison 6, FF Bryan Kuhn Ladder 159, EMT Gerald Lenox Station 52, FF Mike McNamara L-3, FF Randy Meredith Engine 54, EMT Jon Morel Station 15, FF Kieran Wilhelm Ladder 6

NYPD: Richard Wall, PETR JANAK, James KENNY, Inmer Mata, Ryan Gallagher, Mike Relf, Kyle Kelly, Ray Pennington, KEVIN Adair, James Kearney, Ben Beiro, LIAM Crowley, John Bulzomi, Craig Zimmer, Greg Scott, Louie Ducceschi (Captain), Gerry O’Eightman, Calder Orr, Dartray Belk, Tony KEMPINSKI, Joshua Elsasser, Aaron Ayala, James O’Brien, James Cleary, John D’Allarra ,Patrick Daly, Mike Vaccaro, COACHES Tom Delaney, Tom Mullen, Patrick Buckley, DAVE SUCIC, Carol D’Allara, Mike Bresnahan

DJCoil Rugby YouTube Interviews

James Kennedy, Majority Owner Rugby United New York, discusses successes and challenges of the 2019 Major League Rugby season and plans for 2020.

Anthony Parry, Rugby United New York Player, discusses his development as a professional player and community service.

Chris Sullivan, Rugby United New York and Monmouth Rugby Club Player, discusses balancing demands of being a chiropractor and a professional rugby player, Monmouth Rugby Day, and the New Jersey Selects vs Lansdowne FC on June 6, 2019.

Riekert Hattingh, Seattle Seawolves Player, discusses being a player-coach in the first MLR season.

Tony Ridnell, a former USA Rugby National Team Player, discusses Men’s and Women’s National Team funding.

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DJCoil Rugby articles by Doug Coil are also available on Facebook. Other Social Media sites to follow or subscribe include Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube for interviews.

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North American Rugby News With A USA Slant