Last weekend home team Lansdowne beat an undermanned, but valiant Rockaway Fishead side by 50-38. The Irishmen were led by Blake Mannion's 3 first half tries as he maintained his torrid scoring pace. The 2nd half saw Rockaway roar back as the men from the peninsula scored five unanswered tries to make the numbers interesting.
The scoring began in the second minute as outhalf Marcus McAlinden deftly avoided three defenders to create some space. Just inside the Rockaway 22, he offloaded to winger Greg Alexander, who sped into the in-goal for the first try. Four minutes later, Shane Raftery sent a sizzling pass inside to Blake Mannion. Center Mannion sprinted downfield into goal for the converted try, thereby raising the score to 12-0. Blake was just getting started at this point, and six minutes later, demonstrated soft hands upon collecting a live bouncing ball. He proceeded to outrun three Rockaway defenders en route to scoring his second try of the affair.
In the 16th minute, the irrepressible "Big" John McGuinness snatched a ball out of a ruck and slammed down, thereby raising Lansdowne's ever-increasing lead. Three minutes later, impressive scrumhalf Captain Mark Giordano smoothly made space and touched down in the corner. He proceeded to convert his own try. Minute 25 saw co-Man of the Match (along with the ever active James Powell at #8) fullback Joe Giordano launched a lovely kick into the corner which Blake Mannion managed to grab. "Uncle" Blake slammed down to complete his hat trick. Impressive newcomer Matt Murray scored his 2nd try in as many weeks as he gobbled up a loose ball in minute 29 and touched down.
Rockaway entered the numbers sheet in the 31st minute as they scored out of a quick tap penalty. Lansdowne responded accordingly as Shane Raftery touched down out of a lineout in minute 36. The Fisheads' response was immediate as they slammed down off of a quick tap penalty in the 38th minute. The visitors closed the first half numbers as they scored a try in injury time.
Rockaway continued with more intensity and focus in the 2nd half. In the 46th minute, the visitors started a drive at the Lansdowne 10 meter line and, through multiple phases, were able to score a beautiful converted try. The Fisheads continued to attack through multiphase ball and managed a neatly executed try in minute 61. The visitors closed the match scoring- and got within 12 points- due to some impressive work by their forwards.
On a related note, former Lansdowne, New York Irish and NYAC legend Tommy O'Dwyer led his Tullow Club (home team of Irish international Sean O'Brien) to a victory over Enniscorthy in the Anderson Cup in Carlow town. The 51 year old tighthead prop had a crucial role in keeping the Enniscorthy lads honest as he demonstrated to the young ones how it's down yet again.
Lansdowne practices are held every Monday and Wednesday at 8:00 pm at Tibbetts Brook Park in Yonkers. All interested players should just come on down or contact the Club at any of the following: website lansdownerugbyclub.com, website [email protected] or phone hotline (914)584-4541.
No Irish Need Apply? Not anymore