By Brian Lowe, Date: 22/9/15
Photo Credit Carolyn Ritchie
Canada has drawn first blood in the 2015 Colonial Cup with a 36-28 win against the USA in the opening game of the series Sunday in Conshohocken, PA.
Canada opened the scoring and posted three quick tries before the Hawks started to find some rhythm to reply with tries of their own.
“They played well and looked a better combination,” said USA Hawks coach Peter Illfield about the Canadians. “It was obvious those players have played together before. We were a bit rusty as it was the first time our guys have played together.”
The Wolverines led 18-12 at halftime.
“It was about cohesion,” noted Illfield. “We had some experienced guys, but a lot of new guys too. I thought the standard of play was really good.”
It was the first time ever that a US team had been put through a process of combines, there were three of them, which resulted in the inclusion of players from right across the USARL’s competitions.
USA try-scorers included Kenny Britt, Ryan Burroughs, Taylor Alley (2) and Casey Clark. Captain Matt Walsh booted four goals to round out the American scoring.
The US got a second wind and had the upper hand towards the end of proceedings, but ran out of time.
Coach Illfield says while they need to reassess their performance, he is confident nonetheless that the Hawks can flip the tables on their archrivals in Game 2 of the series.
“I’ll be very surprised if we don’t turn things around and beat them by 20 points,” he added. “We’ve got some injuries, so will make a couple of changes. It was more about execution. We need to enhance the strategy that we have and get better execution.”
It was Canada’s second straight victory over the USA following last year’s one-off Colonial Cup match in Toronto.
The second game of this year’s series is set for October 18 at A.A. Garthwaite Stadium in Conshohocken, PA.
01 – Kenny Britt (CNT FL Warriors)
02 – Rodrigus Ceasar (CNT FL Warriors)
03 – Ryan Burroughs (NOVA)
04 – Taylor Alley (Cnt Warriors)
05 – David Aguilar – Wing (Jax Axemen)
06 – Rich Henson (Philadelphia Fight) (c)
07 – Matt Walsh (Connecticut Wildcats)
08 – Andrew Kneisly (Philadelphia Fight)
09 – Gareth Walker (CNT FL Warriors)
10 – Marcos Flegmann (Boston 13s)
11 – Jonathon Purnell (Jax Axemen)
12 – Casey Clark (Philadelphia Fight)
13 – Kevin Wiggins (Black Foxes)
Subs (all used)
14 – Nick Newlin (Atlanta Rhinos)
15 – Terrance Williams (Atlanta Rhinos)
16 – Curtis Goddard (Boston 13s)
17 – Abe Cohen (NY Knights)
Tries: Taylor Alley 2, Casey Clark, Ryan Burroughs, Kenny Britt
Goals: Matt Walsh 4 /5
1. Robin Legault (Toronto Centurions)
2. Trent Bourke (Abbotsford Griffins/Jamberoo Superoos)
21. Jonathan Cregg (Toronto Centurions)
4. Christian Miller (Brantford Broncos)
5. Billy Gemmell (Brantford Broncos)
6. Matt Wyles (Toronto Centurions)
7. Steve Piatek (Brantford Broncos)
8. Jason Locke (Toronto Centurions)
9. Alan Lafferty (Brantford Broncos)
10. Antoine Blanc (Toronto City Saints)
11. Denny McCarthy (Oakville Crusaders)
12. Erick Alvarado (Brantford Broncos)
19. Max Smillie (Toronto Centurions)
Subs (all used)
14. Eddie Billborough (Toronto City Saints)
15. Joey Murphy (Surrey Beavers/Jamberoo Superoos)
16. JT Rowbotham (Toronto Centurions)
17. Enoch Wamalwa (Toronto City Saints)
Tries: Alan Lafferty, Christian Miller, Jonathan Cregg, Trent Bourke, Enoch Wamalwa, Antoine Blanc
Goals: Steve Piatek 6/6
Half time: 12-18
Referee: Vince Lawson