Rugby New York lost 33-18 to the New England Free Jacks on Sunday, March 19. As a result, the Free jacks moved into first place in the Major League Rugby Eastern Conference while the Ironworkers fell to third.
This rivalry match was broadcast on MSG and NBCSB and streamed on The Rugby Network with a replay on the latter.
The rivalry between New York and New England continued in Mount Vernon where hard hits were the norm. It took only a minute before Canadian international Andrew Coe left the field for an HIA with Quinn Ngawati entering initially as a blood substitute and continuing for the remainder of the match.
New England had the first scoring opportunity after an Ironworkers penalty, eschewed a goal attempt, and kicked for the corner for an attacking lineout. The team mauled and Joe Johnston was held up in goal for a New York goal kick.
The Free jacks continued to place New York under pressure and Kara Pryor was sent to the bin after a high tackle on Wayne Van der Bank. The Free jacks would cross in goal with Johnston held up a second time.
New York would gain an advantage after a long kick by Sam Windsor. This led to a break by Quinn Ngawati and after a New England off-sides penalty, Windsor slotted a penalty goal for a 3-0 lead.
The Free Jacks answered back after a New York penalty with a Cam Davidowicz try from close range. Jayson Potroz’s conversion was wide, 3-5.
New England scored again with Paula Balekana’s try in the left corner and Potroz adding the extras, 3-12.
Late in the first half, after a Free jacks penalty, Sam Windsor slotted a penalty goal, 6-12. and after an attacking lineout, Quinn Ngawati dove over for a try in the right corner in the 42nd minute, 11-12. The conversion by Windsor for the lead was unsuccessful as the wind made kicks from touch almost impossible.
New England struck quickly in the second half with Balekana scoring in the left corner with Nick Feakes trying to hold him up. Again the wind was a factor as Potroz’s conversion was wide, 11-17.
New York benefitted from two Free Jacks penalties which resulted in a Kara Pryor try and a Windsor conversion to take an 18-17 lead.
New England tried to answer back but Wayne Van der Bank was held up in goal, resulting in an Ironworkers goal kick.
The Free jacks would take the lead for good after an attacking lineout and a Wayne Van der Bank try and Potroz conversion, 18-24.
A penalty goal by Potroz in the 61st minute meant New York needed to score twice, 18-27. Potroz would add two other penalty goals to increase the team’s point differential in the close Eastern Conference standing, to win with a final to the Free Jacks 33-18.
With the win, New England moved into first place with a 2-2 record and 15 points. They host the Dallas jackals on Saturday, March 25. Rugby New York fell to third place with a 2-3 record entering a bye week before hosting Rugby ATL on April 2.
Squads With Player Profile Article Links & Match Preview
Rugby New York Ironworkers: 1 Chance Wenglewski 2 Dylan Fawsitt 3 Nic Mayhew 4 Nate Brakeley (C) 5 Charlie Hewitt 6 Ben Bonasso 7 Kara Pryor 8 Pago Haini 9 Connor Buckley 10 Sam Windsor 11 Ed Fidow 12 Teihorangi Walden 13 Fa’asiu Fuatai 14 Andrew Coe15 Nick Feakes 16 Kaleb Geiger 17 Tevita Langi 18 Sam Davies 19 Hamish Dalzell 20 Joe Basser 21 Eamonn Matthews 22 Jason Emery 23 Quinn Ngawati
New England Free Jacks: 1 Kyle Ciquera 2 Andrew Quattrin 3 Cole Keith 4 Semiisi Paea 5 Conor Keys 6 Cam Davidowicz 7 Joe Johnston 8 Wian Conradie 9 John Poland 10 Jayson Potroz 11 Paula Balekana 12 Wayne van der Bank 13 Ben LeSage 14 Mitch Wilson15 Reece MacDonald 16 Mills Sanerivi 17 Foster DeWitt 18 Joel Hintz 19 Sam Fischli 20 Mitch Jacobson 21 Holden Yungert 22 Spencer Jones 23 Taniela Filimone
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