It was a fiesta of tries for both sides as Lansdowne beat and undermanned Rockaway by 59 to 31. The homeside's front row of Ian O'Connor, Brian Kealey, Mike Popaski and later Tom Murray, impacted immediately and were able to create a platform of attack for the backs who responded accordingly. In the fourth minute Center Marcus McAlinden chipped forward to Blake Mannion. Center Mannion continued his torrid try scoring run by touching down. The visitors responded with a quick tap penalty to take the lead two minutes later. But in the eighth minute number eight Chris O'Connor grabbed the ball out of the base of the scrum and offloaded to the waiting hands of second row John McGuinness, who touched down, thereby regaining the lead for the homeside.
In the 20th minute prop Tom Murray slammed down with Sennin Flanagan converting as Lansdowne began to widen the gap by 19-7. But Rockaway responded as their scrum half cleverly intercepted a pass and ran 40 meters to bring the Fisheads to within 19-14. In injury time, Captain Mark Giordano seized the ball out of the out of a ruck and scored a converted try.
The second half began as Rockaway came out with serious intentions. The visitors recycled the ball well and touched down to close the gap 26-19. But Lansdowne responded due to an impressive scrum. Out half Eoghan Maher zipped the ball out to Man of the Match Marcus McAlinden, who demonstrated some deft footwork in widening the lead. Ten minutes later, Brian Fingleton had a quick tap penalty. He offloaded to Austin Purcell who spotted Greg Alexander in the corner. Winger Alexander ran into the corner of the in-goal as the try scoring party was in full bloom.
Five minutes later, some beautiful ball movement by Mark Giordano and Austin Purcell placed the oval into the capable hands of Eoghan Maher, who emphatically slammed down. The expression "champagne rugby" comes to mind with that Sennin Flanagan converted try. Marcus McAlinden struck again six minutes later as he demonstrated some deft footwork in making 3 would be tacklers miss as he touched down. Rockaway closed the scoring in minute 78 as their fullback scored a long distance try from 50 meters out.
The 'B' game was played in a 10 man a side format. In minute 4, Rockaway's winger blew past the Lansdowne defense and touched down. The homeside evened it up as Cathal McHenry ran in from 30 meters out and converted his own. Lansdowne took the lead in minute 8. Man of the Match John Giordano glided in from 50 meters out. Rockaway closed the scoring in injury time as a try was created due to some lovely recycling of the ball.
As the next half opened, John Giordano scored his second long-distance try of the day. But Rockaway responded just two minutes later with a well-deserved effort. Three minutes later fullback John Giordano completed his treble with another blazing run as Lansdowne looked to widen the gap. Will Horgan ran into the corner of the in-goal to finish the scoring in injury time.
Lansdowne practices are held every Monday and Wednesday at 8 o'clock PM Tibbetts Brook Park in Yonkers. All interested players should come on down or contact the club at any of the following: website www.lansdownerugbyclub.com, email [email protected] or phone hotline (914)297-8429. Next up for Lansdowne is an away match against Brooklyn Rugby Club.
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