Rugby New York dominated the set-pieces while exploding for a 41-5 road win over the Dallas Jackals on Saturday, February 26 at Choctaw Stadium, Arlington, Texas. Replays of the match may be seen on The Rugby Network.
With their third consecutive road win, the undefeated Rugby New York, 3-0, vaulted into first place in the Eastern Conference with 14 points. They will host the New England Free Jacks on Sunday, March 6 at JFK Stadium in Hoboken, New Jersey. The kickoff for New York’s 2022 home opener is at 3 pm ET and tickets are available.
With the loss, the Dallas Jackals’ record drops to 0-4, and they remain in seventh place in the Western Conference. The Jackals travel to Herriman, Utah on March 5 to face the Utah Warriors. The kickoff is at 2 pm ET.
During warmups, both Ben Bonasso and Troy Lockyear of Rugby New York sustained minor injuries and necessitated changes in the matchday squad. Dylan Fawsitt and Conor McManus joined as reserves with Nate Brakeley moving to lock, Will Tucker to blindside flanker, Sam Windsor to flyhalf, and Jack Heighton to fullback.
It was a cold night in Dallas, but the predicted rain held off and did not impact ball handling.
Dallas Jackals Adriaan Carlese kicked off and Rugby New York attacked first. In the fourth minute, New York’s offloads from Jason Emery to Brendon O’Connor to Connor Buckley to Apensia Cakaubalavu, had him grounding for an apparent try. A TMO, however, nullified the try as the offload from Buckley to Cakaubalavu was forward.
Rugby New York scored four minutes later from an attacking lineout, mauling to close range with Kalolo Tuiloma barreling over for a try, 0-5.
Rugby New York scrum was dominant for the entire match, and after a scrum penalty, and advantage, the team attacked from a lineout 5-meters from in-goal. A turnover in contact gave the Jackals a 5-meter scrum. New York drove the Jackals back and the ball exited over the dead ball line, giving New York another 5-meter scrum with Pago Haini going blind for a try in the right corner. Sam Windsor slotted the conversion from near touch, 0-12.
New York continued their offensive assault, with a Haini charge, with Buckley offloading to Will Tucker, who grounded in the right corner as Chris Pennell defended, 0-17.
After Sam Windsor collected a high ball from the Jackals Adriaan Carlese, Jack Heighton lost the ball after a jarring Mike Matarazzo tackle. Chad London used his foot skills to advance ahead before picking the ball up and scoring Dallas’ lone try of the night, 5-17.
Rugby New York appeared to score their fourth try from a Windsor cross-kick to Andrew Coe in the 39th minute, but the referee ruled that Coe was ahead of the kicker. A penalty advantage gave New York an attacking 5-meter lineout and after the ensuing maul, Tuiloma had a brace, 5-22. This was the team’s fourth try and would give them a bonus point in the standings.
The first half statistics showed that Rugby New York had 67% of the possession and 60% of the territory. They also won 8 lineouts to none for the Jackals. New York’s dominance was not only in the scrums and lineouts, but the Jackals made 105 tackles to New York’s 12.
The Dallas Jackals had the first scoring opportunity of the half after Conrado Roura stripped the ball from Connor Buckley. Dallas went through phases and after a linebreak by Carlese with Trinder and Pennell following, a knock on thwarted the attack.
New York defended their scrum, however, an uncharacteristic drop by Windsor gave the Jackals an attacking scrum about 8-meters from in-goal. A steal by New York and a clearance kick by Windsor released the pressure.
Andy Ellis showed his form with a no-look pass and soon after, he stepped a defender and offloaded to Samm Windsor for a try under the posts, 5-29.
With the Dallas Jackals advancing near the Rugby New York 22-meters, a knock-on resulted in a New York scrum. The scrum collapsed and New York was penalized, with the Jackals attacking from a 5-meter lineout.
During the ensuing maul, New York Kaleb Geiger tackled Adriaan Booysen and needed to leave the match for an HIA with Wilton Rebolo returning for the remainder of the match. Dallas had a 5-meter scrum and Ellis caused a penalty on Roura, thwarting another Dallas scoring chance.
Rugby New York scored in the 65th minute after a lineout with Emery slanting to within 5-meters and an Andy Ellis offload to Jack Heighton for a birthday try, as well as the conversion, 5-36.
New York would tack on one more try after going through phases with loads from Ellis, Heighton, and Wilton Rebolo finishing with a try in the right corner, 5-41.
Man of the Match honors went to Pago Haini.
The Dallas Jackals need to assess areas they need to address while maintaining a positive focus. The team continued to play hard and had some second-half scoring chances that did not materialize. After viewing the replay, they can prepare for their next match against the Utah Warriors, had hope that leads to their first win.
Rugby New York has had the best road record in the league in the past, and with a 3-0 record on the road, will look forward to next week’s home opener against the New England Free Jacks.
The Free Jacks still have a match to play later today on the road against last year’s MLR champions, the LA Giltinis.
Squads with Player Article Links & Match Preview
Dallas Jackals: 1 Liam Murray 2 Matt Frings 3 Alex Tucci 4 Bronson Teles 5 Jérémy Lenaerts 6 Mike Matarazzo 7 Moe Abdelmonem (VC) 8 Conrado Roura 9 Tom Brusati 10 Adriaan Carelse 11 Aaron Gray 12 Chad London 13 Henry Trinder 14 Campbell Johnstone 15 Chris Pennell (C) 16 Brendan Rams 17 Ryan Bower 18 Tommy Madaras 19 Adriaan Booysen 20 Sam Phillips 21 Dylan James 22 Ned Hodson 23 Alejandro Torres
Rugby New York: 1 Sak Taulafo 2 Wilton Rebolo 3 Kalolo Tuiloma 4 Nate Brakeley (C) 5 Charlie Hewitt 6 Will Tucker 7 Brendon O’Connor 8 Pago Haini 9 Connor Buckley 10 Sam Windsor 11 Apenisa Cakaubalavu 12 Jason Emery 13 Quinn Ngawati14 Andrew Coe 15 Jack Heighton 16 Kaleb Geiger 17 Chance Wenglewski 18 Nic Mayhew 19 Joe Basser 20 Dylan Fawsitt 21 Conor McManus 22 Andy Ellis 23 Faasiu Fuatai
- Austin Gilgronis 43-7 Dallas Jackals
- San Diego Legion 37-29 Dallas Jackals
- Dallas Jackals 33-38 Houston SaberCats
- Dallas Jackals 5-41 Rugby New York
Rugby New York
- Houston SaberCats 7-10 Rugby New York
- Rugby ATL 31-36 Rugby New York
- Dallas Jackals 5-41 Rugby New York
DJCoil Rugby articles by Doug Coil are also available on Facebook. Other Social Media sites to follow or subscribe to include Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube for interviews.