Visiting Lansdowne scored 4 spectacular- albeit completely diverse- tries in gaining a bonus point victory against Long Island Rugby Club this past Saturday. The match was played in sweltering 80° plus temperatures in scenic Oyster Bay, Long Island, although neither side seemed affected by the heat as the referee allowed for water breaks. Long Island were clinical as they opened the scoring in the 7th minute. Nine well worked phases saw them touch down, and the ensuing conversion gave them a 7 point advantage.
Minute 15 had Lansdowne get on the score sheet. A thumping 6 meter run downfield by prop Ian O’Connor pushed the Long Island defense back and created a platform which enabled the backs to attack. The ball passed through each of the backliners’ hands enroute to Blake Mannion, who spectacularly scored his first try of the half. Lansdowne struck again in minute 24. Austin Purcell zipped a lovely pass out to fullback John Giordano. In what can be described as the run of the season, Man of the Match John Giordano slipped past, juked out and pounded off of 5 Long Island defenders as his brilliant 40 meter run gave Lansdowne a 10 to 7 lead.
There was more champagne rugby left in Lansdowne. Minute 30 saw the visitors at the Long Island 10. Austin Purcell stole a ball out of a ruck and passed to Ian O’Connor who, in turn, popped out to fellow prop Brian ‘Foxy’ Keeley. Under enormous pressure by 2 Long Island defenders, Kealey kicked a grubber as he was being tackled. The ball split 2 homeside defenders and Blake Mannion followed suit as he flew past the chasing Long Islanders and slammed down in what can be described as the try of the season. Joe Giordano’s conversion gave the visitors a 17 to 7 lead. Long Island closed the 1st half scoring. After multiple phases, a bruising run by their #8 led to an unconverted try in the 38th minute.
Long Island took the lead in minute 50. After multiple phases which got them deep into Lansdowne territory, a lovely 10 meter run by their center and successful conversion gave them a 19 to 17 advantage. However just 3 minutes later Lansdowne responded furiously and got down to the Long Island 5 meter line. A rolling mall ensued and Greg Alexander touched down, giving the Irishman a 22 19 lead which they wouldn’t relinquish. The next 10 minutes saw Lansdowne and Long Island each convert on penalty attempts. Joe Giordano converted his last penalty and closed the numbers in minute 70 at 28 22.
The Lansdowne ‘B’ game was played in Brooklyn’s home pitch of Fort Hamilton in picturesque Bay Ridge. Lansdowne ‘B’ beat Brooklyn ‘B’ by 15 to 12. Man of the Match was hooker Pat ‘the Baker’ Devery, who was outstanding in leadership and play. The Jones brothers Ryan and Luke did all the scoring for Lansdowne as Luke had 2 tries and Ryan added another. A typically effective performance was put in by ‘Rampaging’ Steve Murphy in support.
Lansdowne practices are held on Randall’s Island every Tuesday and Thursday at 7:00 PM in field 75. All interested players should come on down or contact the club at any of the following: phone (914)29-rugby, email firstname.lastname@example.org or website lansdownerugbyclub.com.