Arrows Fight Back to Earn Bonus Point in Atlanta
The Arrows clawed back to secure a road bonus point in the club’s season-opening loss to Rugby ATL at Silverbacks Park on Friday evening.
Mitch Richardson scored a try and all-time points leader Sam Malcolm added five points off the boot as part of a late Toronto surge in the final minutes of the match, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the hosts’ 17-point advantage.
Atlanta led by 12 at the interval through tries by Alex Maughan and Austin White, with Kurt Coleman adding a conversion. Maughan scored the first try of the 2023 Major League Rugby season off a physical pick-and-go in the 13th minute before White doubled the home side’s try tally off an overlap run just after the hydration break.
The opening 20 minutes of the second frame was a stingy defensive stalemate, with neither side allowing the other time and space on the ball. The second-half deadlock was broken by Rewita Biddle following the hour mark, with the Kiwi centre finding a gap and touching down in the corner to increase his side’s lead to 17.
As the clock ticked down, a perfectly-weighted kick to space from Shane O’Leary was deftly plucked up by a storming Ciaran Breen, who sprang the support-running Richardson to race in for unimpeded try in the 76th minute. Malcolm kicked the extras, and added a penalty at the final whistle to earn the visitors a bonus point.
Eleven players made their Arrows debut in the Fire and Ice Cup clash; newcomers Nic Benn, Breen, Cole Davis, Travis Larsen, Conan O’Donnell, Gene Syminton, Tautalatasi Tasi, Corey Thomas, and Micaiah Torrance-Read started, and were joined by Fabian Goodall and O’Leary off the bench.
The hosts’ victory means the Fire and Ice Cup will remain in Atlanta for another year, as the trophy can only be claimed if won in the home stadium of the previous year’s winner.
Toronto (0-1; 1 point) enters the second week of the 2023 season with an away clash against reigning MLR Champions New York Ironworkers (0-1; 0 points) on Sunday, Feb. 26. The Arrows split the season series in 2022, winning 14-10 on the road before dropping a 41-17 decision at York Lions Stadium later in the year. The Eastern Conference meeting at Memorial Field in Mount Vernon, NY, will kick off at 3 p.m. ET.
Toronto Arrows Stat Leaders:
Ball Carries: Travis Larsen, Lucas Rumball – 10
Carry Metres: Mitch Richardson – 129
Defenders Beaten: Lucas Rumball – 6
Tackles Made: Micaiah Torrance-Read – 16
Offloads: Tautalatasi Tasi – 2
Attacking Breakdown Arrivals: Mason Flesch, Corey Thomas – 21
Defending Breakdown Arrivals: Lucas Rumball – 14
Rugby ATL Stat Leaders:
Ball Carries: Jason Damm, Martini Talapusi – 11
Carry Metres: Martini Talapusi – 142
Defenders Beaten: Three Players – 4
Tackles Made: Johan Momsen – 16
Offloads: Jack Shaw – 2
Attacking Breakdown Arrivals: Johan Momsen – 18
Defending Breakdown Arrivals: Will Leonard – 11
Toronto Arrows Score Report:
Tries: Mitch Richardson (76′)
Conversions: Sam Malcolm (77′)
Penalty Goals: Sam Malcolm (80+1′)
Rugby ATL Score Report:
Tries: Alex Maughan (13′), Austin White (23′), Rewita Biddle (65′)
Conversions: Kurt Coleman (14′)
Toronto Arrows Lineup vs. Rugby ATL:
- Conan O’Donnell
- Gene Syminton
- Isaac Salmon
- Mason Flesch
- Micaiah Torrance-Read
- Travis Larsen
- Lucas Rumball (C)
- Corey Thomas
- Ross Braude
- Sam Malcolm (VC)
- Nic Benn
- Tautalatasi Tasi
- Mitch Richardson
- Cole Davis
- Ciaran Breen
- Jack McRogers
- Lolani Faleiva
- Tyler Rowland
- Adrian Wadden
- Mike Sheppard (VC)
- Cole Brown
- Shane O’Leary
- Fabian Goodall
Academy Grads Black, Stevenson Poised for Debuts as Arrows Head to Utah
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE HERRIMAN, UT – Toronto Arrows Head Coach Peter Smith
Toronto Arrows Activate Black, Stevenson to Senior Team
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE TORONTO, ON – The Toronto Arrows are pleased to
Week 5 Milestone Tracker: Shep Hits the Half-Century
The following club career milestones were achieved by our players during the
Broadcast Details: Toronto Arrows vs. Utah Warriors (March 25, 2023)
Details for how to watch our upcoming away match against the Utah