Rugby United New York Beats New York Barbarians, Interviews, & MLR Vegas Weekend

Rugby United New York faced the New York Barbarians at Wagner College Stadium on February 1, 2020, and left with an 84-7 victory.

The New York Barbarians, an invitational side is comprised of MLR prospects throughout the greater NYC area. Coach McWilliams identified these athletes after calling to coaches for local nominations. By creating this side, RUNY shows its commitment to growing the game in the local community. After fielding two developmental sides last spring, the organization continues to build out a clear development pathway for local athletes.

Last weekend, RUNY met the Toronto Arrows for a joint training session in the ADPro Training Center. After trading repetitions through live drills, the day ended with a physical scrimmage.

The team kicks off their 2020 season against the New England Free Jacks in Las Vegas on Sunday, February 8 as part of the Major League Rugby Vegas Weekend. They follow that up with a match on Saturday, February 14 against the Austin Gilgronis.

Match Scoring Recap

The match consisted of four quarters. The New York Barbarians were led by head coach Dom Wareing, who is the head coach of Old Blue.

The Barbarians JJ Jackson scored the first points of the match following an intercept which led to a try and a conversion to take a 7-0 lead. After that, Rugby United New York dominated possession and their defense was stellar. Despite a free line breaks by the Barbarians and some crunching tackles, RUNY exploded for 11 tries, all converted.

The NY Barbarians were comprised of many of the leading outstanding local players and their support in playing the match was invaluable to help prepare RUNY for their upcoming match against the New England Free Jacks.

Following the early try by the Barbarians, Chris Mattina, Will Leonard, and Dylan Fawsitt scored first-quarter tries with Harry Bennett adding the extras. Mattina scored in the right corner and Leonard scored after multiple touches by RUNY players. Fawsitt scored following a maul.

Paddy Ryan opened the scoring from close range in the second quarter with a try. Kyle Sumsion added another from a Trevor Cassidy offload. James Denise scored after an offload from Marcus Walsh, and Dylan Fawsitt added a brace prior to the break with harry Bennet perfect on the night to lead 49-0 at halftime.

The match provided opportunities in the second half for players to switch positions. Chris Mattina spent some time at flyhalf, Harry Bennett shifted to wing, both Nate Brakeley and Kyle Sumsion spent time at lock, and Mathieu Bastareaud went into the forwards at No. 8.

The second half found training squad players Julio Caesar Giraldo from Old Blue enter at flanker and Nick Jimenez from NYAC at scrumhalf. RUNY players Rob Irimescu (hooker), Alec McDonnell (LHP), Kirk Hamilton (THP), Jonas Petrakopoulos (prop), Eric Tack (FB), and Jake Feury (Wing) played during the second half.

The scoring is unofficial and I apologize if I missed any players or try acknowledgments are inaccurate.

During the third quarter, tries were scored by Rob Irimescu, Jonas Petrakopoulos, and JP Aguirre, the latter from a James Denise offload. Chris Mattina slotted the conversions to push the lead to 70-5.

In the final quarter, Jake Feury went down the wide right channel for a try and Rob Irimescu added a brace, with Mattina again converting for a final of 84-7.

Rugby United New York: 1 Will Burke 2 Dylan Fawsitt 3 Paddy Ryan 4 Alex MacDonald 5 Trevor Cassidy 6 Nate Brakeley 7 James Denise 8 Kyle Sumsion 9 Marcus Walsh 10 Harry Bennett 11Mike St. Claire 12 Will Leonard 13 Mathieu Bastareaud 14 JP Aguirre 15 Chris Mattina Reserves 16 Robert Irimescu 17 Alec McDonnell 3 Kirkland Hamilton 18 Jonas Petrakopoulos 20 Julio César Giraldo 21 Eric Tack 22 Nick Jimenez 23 Jake Feury

New York Barbarians: 1 Khyheem Finley (Old Blue) 2 Jamal Hadley (Old Blue) 3 Jimmy Sheridan (Old Blue) 4 Dave Hansberry (Lansdowne) 5 Kyle White (NYAC) 6 Onye Onwukanjo (White Plains) 7 Luis Carpio (Old Blue) 8 Giorgi Maisuradze (White Plains) 9 Ryan Manning (Old Blue) 10 Nick Vigder (Old Blue) 11 Mate Kvirikashvili (Aspertuck) 12 Sondai Adjei (Old Blue) 13 Johnphilip P. Lupenui Corpuz-Jackson (Old Blue) 14 Clinton Olaniyi (Old Blue) 15 John Powers (White Plains) Reserves: 16 Adam Zeich (NYAC) 17 Francis Dougherty (Old Blue) 18 Mike Stivale (White Plains) 19 Stephen Cappello (New Haven) 20 Facundo Solaire (Lansdowne) 21 Calder Orr (old Blue) 22 Stephen Grenham (Lansdowne) 23 Caleb Butera (New Haven) 24 John D’Allara (White Plains) 25 Dylan Murray (NYAC) 26 Daniel Bamford (NYRFC) 27 Willie Dominguez (NYRFC) 28 Brandon Solomon (Old Blue) 29 Sean Porrata (Old Blue) *Player numbers to not reflect their positions.

Rugby United New York Supporters Meet the Players Night

The first RUNY Season Ticket Holder event is Wednesday at The World Famous Pig n Whistle on 36st starting at 6 pm. Get Your Rooster Booster Package now!!!

View the Rugby United New York Supporters Facebook page for several video clips of the match and to follow team news.

Rugby United New York DJCoil Rugby Interviews

Special thanks go out to the Rugby United New York organization, its players, fans and the community base of supporters as the team begins the 2020 MLR season. Alex MacDonald, a lock/flanker on the team, helped coordinate the interviews. Alex is the Community Outreach Coordinator for RUNY.

James Kennedy & Guy Bolton (Bolton Equities) Rugby United New York Owners discuss mutual benefits Bolton Equities for RUNY, Venator (UK Sports tours agency), & 2020 coaches.

Rugby United New York Head Coach Greg McWilliams discusses why he joined the club, coaching style, Wagner College training facility, players, & expectations for the season. (Post-match RUNY vs NY Barbarians at Wagner College Stadium, 1 Feb. 2020)

Rugby United New York Academy Director/ Team Manager, Simon Gillespie discusses the Academy & Manager responsibilities & plans for Major League Rugby Vegas Weekend.

Rugby United New York Captain Dylan Fawsitt discusses leadership, Rugby World Cup team applications, and season expectations.

Rugby United New York Fullback/Center Troy Lockyear discusses the team’s community outreach goals

Rugby United New York Lock Trevor Cassidy discusses professional rugby player pathway & leadership. Trevor is the captain of Old Blue in addition to playing for RUNY.

Major League Rugby Vegas Weekend

Rugby United New York will travel to Las Vegas to kick off the Major League Rugby Vegas Weekend against the New England Free Jacks at Sam Boyd Stadium on Sunday, February 9. Rugby United New York were semi-finalists in 2019, while the Free Jacks are one of the three new teams in the league in 2020. The other two are Rugby ATL and Old Glory DC, who also play in the Eastern Conference.

The Major League Rugby Vegas Weekend consists of five of the 2020 regular season matches that will be played at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas. Sam Boyd Stadium is the original home of rugby in Las Vegas. This match will serve as a precursor to the official MLR Vegas Weekend, consisting of double-header matches on Saturday, February 15 and Sunday, February 16.

Tickets for the MLR Vegas Weekend can be purchased by day (listed above), or as weekend packages. MLR has also secured special rates for team and fan hotels to maximize the getaway.

MLR Las Vegas Schedule

Sunday, February 9, 2020 – New England Free Jacks vs Rugby United New York at 4:00 PM ET BUY TICKETS

Saturday, February 15, 2020  BUY TICKETS

  • Utah Warriors vs New England Free Jacks at 2:30 PM ET
  • Rugby United New York vs Austin Herd at 6:30 PM ET

Sunday, February 16, 2020 BUY TICKETS

  • Toronto Arrows vs Houston SaberCats at 2:30 PM ET
  • San Diego Legion vs Colorado Raptors at 6:00 PM ET

BUY MULTIPLE DAY PACKAGES & For group tickets, VIP packages, and suite options, please contact

The weekend event will be in partnership with the Vegas Invitational Rugby Tournament, an annual rugby tournament for all ages and all levels with 7’s and 15’s brackets set to take place February 13 to 16. Participating teams in the tournament will receive tickets to MLR Vegas Weekend matches as a part of their package. For more information on the tournament, or to purchase tickets, visit the site here.

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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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