Quattrin’s Late Try Secures Stunning Road Win Over New York
The Toronto Arrows used a strong defensive effort as a springboard to defeat Rugby New York on Sunday afternoon, completing the comeback in dramatic fashion to earn a 14-10 road win over their Eastern Conference rivals.
Andrew Quattrin’s sensational 78th-minute try secured the statement victory at JFK Stadium, while John Sheridan also added a second-half seven-pointer in his season debut.
With 12 players on the injured reserve and not available for selection on Sunday, few pundits were predicting the 3-3 Arrows would be able to leave Hoboken with a favourable result against the 5-1 New York side. Bucking the odds, the hard-nosed, 146-tackle performance from the travelling Arrows ensured the team’s long-anticipated return to playing home games in Toronto would be accompanied by a winning record and strong momentum off of consecutive victories.
The opening 20 minutes saw Toronto maintain the bulk of possession and territory, though the visiting side was unable to find an early breakthrough in the midst of bouts of snow and rain. Probing runs from Ronan Foley and Sheridan took the Arrows deep in New York’s half, and Cole Keith came within striking distance of the whitewash, but the home side managed to keep points off the board.
Momentum shifted as the Arrows were hit with a double-whammy just before the hydration break. Scrum-half Ross Braude was forced off the pitch following a lower-body injury, and minutes later the hosts executed a well-worked maul off a lineout that was touched down by Kaleb Geiger. Andy Ellis’ conversion attempt missed the mark.
Toronto’s defense held strong for the remainder of the first frame, highlighted by Sam Malcolm‘s powerful tackle to bring down New York No. 8 Kara Pryor. The tackle’s impact was significant enough to warrant an HIA for the Kiwi fly-half, though Malcolm would ultimately return for the beginning of the second half. Down a man after Ueta Tufuga was issued a yellow card minutes before halftime, the Arrows persevered to maintain their defensive poise and kept the deficit at five points heading into the interval.
The Arrows wouldn’t be shut out for much longer. Minutes into the second half, Sheridan scooped up the ball off an errant pass and outpaced two would-be tacklers to run 35 metres under the posts.
Evenly-matched for the next 20 minutes, New York gained a numerical advantage when Paul Ciulini was sent to the bin for dangerous play at the lineout. Deep in Toronto territory and taking advantage of superior on-field personnel, the hosts spun the ball wide to Ed Fidow, who barged across in the left corner. Substitute Sam Windsor went wide on his touchline conversion attempt, leaving the Arrows trailing by three.
An errant kick from New York’s Troy Lockyear gave the Arrows a lifeline when the fullback, well inside his own half, booted the ball out on the full. With Ciulini back on the pitch, the visitors strung together several phases that allowed them to move the ball increasingly inside the hosts’ 22.
Toronto found their breakthrough with two minutes left on the clock, and it proved to be highlight-reel material. Quattrin received a short pass from Chris Bell, and through sheer determination, the hooker shook off one defender and bulldozed through three more en route to scoring under the uprights.
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New York had one final possession following the restart, but the Arrows snuffed out any designs of a late score when their forwards won a turnover; with the clock in the red, Malcolm duly punted the ball out of play to ensure the comeback was completed.
After 1,035 days between MLR regular season home games in Toronto, the Arrows (4-3; 19 points) will make their long-awaited return home with a clash against Rugby ATL (5-2; 26 points) on Saturday, April 2. The Eastern Conference meeting will be played at York Lions Stadium, and will kick off at 12 p.m. ET.
Tickets are available for purchase via AXS, the official ticketing partner of the Toronto Arrows, on a first-come, first-served basis, while supplies last. Single game tickets start as low as $15 and are available for all seven home games in 2022.
Toronto Arrows Stat Leaders:
Ball Carries: Andrew Quattrin – 16
Carry Metres: Andrew Quattrin – 103
Tackles Made: Cole Keith – 21
Offloads: Chris Bell, Isaac Salmon – 2
Rugby New York Stat Leaders:
Ball Carries: Ed Fidow – 9
Carry Metres: Ed Fidow – 106
Tackles Made: Brendon O’Connor – 22
Offloads: Troy Lockyear – 2
Toronto Arrows Score Report:
Tries: J. Sheridan (45*), A. Quattrin (78*)
* = seven-point try
Rugby New York Score Report:
Tries: Kaleb Geiger (20), Ed Fidow (68)
Toronto Arrows Lineup vs. Rugby New York:
- Cole Keith
- Andrew Quattrin
- Isaac Salmon
- Mike Sheppard (C)
- Paul Ciulini
- Lucas Rumball
- James O’Neill
- Ronan Foley
- Ross Braude
- Sam Malcolm
- Mitch Richardson
- Ueta Tufuga
- Dennon Robinson-Bartlett
- John Sheridan
- Brock Webster
- Jack McRogers
- Rob Brouwer
- Tyler Rowland
- Lolani Faleiva
- Ollie Nott
- Chris Bell
- Will Kelly
- Guiseppe du Toit
Header Photo Credit: Alexander Wohl
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