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Uruguay A handled the USA Selects easily and won Sunday’s Americas Pacific Challenge match 47-15. A central factor in the match was Uruguay’s scrum, which was dominant throughout.

The match started in a promising fashion for the Selects, as they moved the ball confidently in attack in their first opportunity. They then stole a Uruguayan lineout, and Mateo Sanguinetti was sin-binned for a tip tackle. Ben Cima’s penalty goal attempt was successful, and the Selects were up 3-0 early.

However, they could not hold onto that lead. Uruguay’s first points came from a penalty won at the scrum. Jeronimo Etcheverry’s first kick was good, and the match was tied.

Etcheverry missed the next chance, but was good on the third opportunity to make it 6-3 after 14 minutes.

Play then stayed in Uruguay’s half for a few minutes, but when Aladdin Schirmer was penalized for tackling a player already on the ground, Uruguay was able to get back in the Selects’ half.

From the lineout following the penalty, Uruguay was able to hold onto the ball until a hole opened up in midfield. Joaquín Dell'Acqua was through that hole and offloaded to Santiago Hernández for the try.

20 minutes into the match, Uruguay was up 13-3.

Errors by both sides kept the score unchanged for several minutes, but when Uruguay was awarded a scrum inside the Selects 22, that was bound to change.  Uruguay won a penalty at the scrum, which Etcheverry then kicked over, and Angus MacLellan was given a yellow card.

The next points in the match came, again, from a Uruguay scrum. Etcheverry’s kick made the score 19-3 in minute 34.

The Selects did not make it easy for themselves, but they did get the next score. From a lineout just inside 30 meters, the ball was shifted quickly to Matai Leuta who was able to get around the corner. With that go-forward ball, USA piled on the pressure. Eventually, Jake Turnbull, who was on while MacLellan was in the sin bin, stretched over for the try. Two minutes before halftime, the Selects were down 19-10.

However, the Selects lost the ball immediately from the restart, and Uruguay had a scrum inside the USA 22. Santiago Gibernau scored on the first phase, running a good line that saw him through the USA centers cleanly.

With the conversion, it was 26-10 at halftime.

The start of the second half was dominated by USA. Malon Al-Jiboori scored the try the Selects deserved, with the ball moving from Cecil Garber on one touchline all the way to Al-Jiboori on the other.

The pressure being exerted by the Uruguay pack moved from the scrum to lineout mauls. That pressure led to a yellow card for Christian Ostberg, and eventually a try for Diego Magno. That try made it 33-15, and any momentum the USA had from the good start to the half was well and truly gone.

While Ostberg was still off the field, Demecus Beach was shown a yellow card for a neck roll.

The Selects continued to compete--even surviving an eight-on-six scrum—but eventually loose defense from a kick made a try for Joaguín Prada a relatively simple affair.

At 40-15 with five minutes to play, the match was over, but the Uruguay scrum gave them one last try. Uruguay won the ball from a Selects put in, and Rodrigo Silva crossed for the match’s final try.

Final score: 47-15.

The USA Selects end their trip to Montevideo with one win from three matches.

USA Rugby Selects

1. Angus MacLellan 2. Joseph Taufete'e(C) 3. Alex Maughan 4. Harry Higgins 5. Matt Jensen 6. Malon Al-Jiboori 7. Aladdin Schirmer 8. Cecil Garber 9. Nicklas Boyer 10. Benjamin Cima 11. Mataiyasi Leuta 12. Bryce Campbell 13. Martin Iosefo 14. Brett Thompson 15. Mike Te'o

Reserves

16. Hanco Germishuys 17. Jake Turnbull 18. Demecus Beach 19. Christian Ostberg 20. Pat Blair 21. Stephen Tomasin 22. Jean-Pierre Eloff 23. Ahmad Harajly

 

Uruguay 'A'

1. Mateo Sanguinetti 2. Martín Espiga 3. Mario Sagario (C) 4. Diego Magno 5. Manuel Leindekar 6. Joaquín Dell'Acqua 7. Santiago Hernández 8. Manuel Diana 9. Santiago Arata 10. Jerónimo Etcheverry 11. Nicolás Freitas 12. Juan Manuel Cat 13. Santiago Gibernau 14. Rodrigo Silva 15. Manuel Blengio

Reserves

16. Marcos Chamyan 17. Ignacio Secco 18. Juan Echeverría 19. Lorenzo Surraco 20. Fernando Bascou 21. Guillermo Lijtenstein 22. Andrés Rocco 23. Joaguín Prada