A well worked 76th minute converted try by the visiting Village Lions ensured their victory in sweltering Tibbetts Brook Park this past Saturday in Lansdowne’s Division 2 debut. The oppressive heat caused several water breaks as each side struggled with hydration. The match had a bit of everything as not only was it a bruising forward encounter but it also had scintillating tries surrounded by sloppy play.
Lansdowne opened the scoring in minute 3. Top notch defensive efforts by James Powell, ‘Big’ John McGuinness and Man of the Match Mike Poplaski caused turnover ball. A Lions infringement at the ensuing ruck gave Sennin Flanagan a shot at goal which he dutifully converted. Ten minutes later good work by the Lions forwards got them inside the Lansdowne 22. A lovely try and conversion gave the visitors to 7 3 advantage. The Lions momentum continued. In minute 18 crisp multiple phases got the visitors down inside the Lansdowne 22. A Lansdowne infringement gave the Lions impressive outhalf a shot close in. He easily converted and put the visitors up by seven.
Minute 27 saw Lansdowne begin a counterattack. The homeside earned a penalty which gave Sennin Flanagan another chance. His successful shot at goal brought the Irishmen to within 4. Five minutes later a Lansdowne scrum from 20 meters out gave the homeside some forward momentum. A clean backline move on the open side brought the ball out to winger Blake Mannion, who slammed down in the corner to get Lansdowne the lead. Towards the end of the 2nd half Lansdowne won a clean line out from 15 meters. A rolling mall ensued out of which Blake Mannion got his 2nd try of the day thereby closing 1st half scoring at 16 10.
The 2nd half saw a lot of physicality but no scoring until late. Lansdowne were able to get close on a few occasions but the Lions impressive defense was focused and prevented any breaches into goal. Minutes 76 saw the Lions score the last try of the match out of a lineup and several phases. A furious Lansdowne response was thwarted and the visitors started a counterattack as the final whistle blew.
Lansdowne practices are held every Tuesday at 6:00 PM and every Thursday at 7:00 PM at field 74 on Randall’s Island. All interested players should come on down or contact the Club at any of the following: phone hotline (914)29 RUGBY, website lansdownerugbyclub.com or email email@example.com.