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The New York team at the World Club 7s has won the Plate, defeating Moscow Saracens in the Plate Semis and Gloucester in the Plate Final.
Meanwhile, the San Francisco team finished 8th out of 12.
New York started Sunday play with a Cup Quarterfinal match against Buenos
Aires and started really well as Alosio Yamo Yamo stripped the ball out of
a Buenos Aires player’s hands and almost scored in the corner. He just
stepped on the touchline.
Yamo Yamo, who joined the club from the British Army after the NY team found themselves short, was then off the field for two minutes with a high tackle. That opened up room for Buenos Aires and a try for international Matias Moroni.
Jaryd Robinson made a break for New York, but his grubber into the middle of the field didn’t work asnd the Argentinean team worked it all the way downfield – stopped only because of a forward pass.
Buenos Aires extended their lead thanks to an audacious pass from Moroni to Rodrigo Etchart. 10-0. With time up in the first half New York got a penalty (and Buenos Aires a yellow card) and they used Chris Rose to probe down the line and then back inside where Robinson ran in to make it 10-7.
Buenos Aires scored quickly in the second half and then again to lead 24-7. New York closed the gap thanks to a penalty on the restart and then out to Harlequins player Chris Rose on the wing.
But Buenos Aires had the last word and scored with time up to win 31-12.
That win put Buenos Aires into the semis and New York went into the Plate semis.
Meanwhile San Francisco met up with Auckland, and started the game with some very desultory tackling that helped Auckland to an early 7-0 lead. Auckland were much better at getting to the ball and halfway through the first half were up 21-0.
They Americans got one back from Danny Barrett. Carlin Isles bobbed and weaved around from his tryline. He then sent a long pass infield and with Jack Halalilo, Mose Timoteo and Mike Te’o involved, they worked it over.
But Auckland was just too much against a seemingly tired San Francisco team. They scored three more tries to lead 40-7. Isles made a massive break off the last restart, then raced across the field before running a switch with Te’o, who put his head down and went to the corner. 40-12.
So on to the Plate Semis; New York against Saracens Moscow and San Francisco against Gloucester.
New York got started with some good pressure defense but couldn’t make it pay off. But finally Augspurger drew his defender and popped an inside ball to Yamo Yamo for a try.
Russia came right back to score, but New York struck back through Rose to make it 14-5. Moscow scored first in the second half to make it 14-12. Moscow looked to add another but the New Yorkers defended smartly, hit hard, and forced a turnover. Lipscomb nabbed the ball and went 85 meters to paydirt. 21-12.
The conversion from Augspurger was crucial as it meant Moscow needed to score twice. Moscow scored with Jack Tracy in the sin bin, and they still had time with the score 21-19.
But New York sealed it with a long run from Augspurger. The captain went 55 meters to score and secure the victory 26-19.
That put New York into the Plate Final and the chance was there to have an all-USA Plate Final.
San Francisco took on Gloucester in the other semi, and this was a tight one. Gloucester opened the scoring but San Francisco came back and almost scored when Jack Halalilo stretched over on a quick tap – but he rush it and lost the ball forward. Gloucteser came oh-so-close to scoring a second time but excellent defense from Danny Barrett stopped them, and Halalilo and Mose Timoteo worked it down the field to get Halalilo over the line.
That made it 7-7, and finally the scampering style of Carlin Isles produced a penalty for shepherding – it was only a matter of time, and Gloucester’s Steph Reynolds took advantage. That try kind of stuck the dagger in, and Gloucester scored at the beginning of the second half to lead 19-7.
Isles split the defense to go 70 meters and make it 19-14 with the Te’o conversion. Gloucester got a lucky try when they were unfairly pinged for in from the side on a promising movement. Quick tap, and long-range try.
SFGG kept the ball the rest of the way and made it to a meter from the line, but no closer.
In the 7th/8th game, Moscow was just the fresher team. Isles scored for San Francisco, but Moscow scored seven. The game ended with Neil Barrett, a hooker in 15s, getting the ball in his hands at his 22 and outpacing everyone to score an improbably try. Good moments for San Francisco at times, but they were not able to keep the energy level. They won their first two games, but faded after that.
Isles turned a lot of heads, and Mike Te-o was inspirational, but not all the pieces fit together.
In the Plate Final then, New York took on Gloucester, and New York, bolstered by a couple of locals, looked eager to claim some silverware. Augspurger almost set up Yamo Yamo early, but the English-Fijian was pushed into touch. Later on, Augspurger did set up Yamo Yamo for the try. 7-0.
Defensive pressure bottled up Gloucester, with Jon Kokinda doing much good work for New York, and in fact Kokinda offloaded nicely while being thrown around. Lipscomb took the pass and was in for a try and a 12-0 New York lead.
An excellent breakaway from Gareth Stoppani made it 19-0 and New York were in control.
In the second half, Kokinda got a try he most certainly deserved to make it 26-0. Gloucester finally got one back, but Augspurger did well to score one of his own.
With time up Gloucester ran one more in, but that was it, 33-14 New York takes the Plate.
New York were paced by some help from UK-based players, but Augspurger was
excellent and Kokinda and Lipscomb also contributed mightily to the effort.
Against some tough and more experienced opposition, the New Yorkers came
together nicely and played well.