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The Texas DI club league got a bit of a shakeup as top team Austin Blacks were stymied by the Dallas Harlequins to a 20-20 tie, and 2-2 Dallas Reds upset the Austin Huns 35-6 to jump from 4th to 2nd.
In the Austin Blacks v. Dallas Harlequins match, Austin took a 14-10 lead into halftime. No. 8 Tim Howard got the lone try for the Blacks while Spencer Cameron touched down for Dallas.
Tomasi Ramanumano added three penalty kicks for Austin to a penalty and a conversion by Charles Davidson for Dallas.
Davidson was outstanding at flyhalf for the ‘Quins, consistently using his boot to pin Austin back in their territory. Conversely, Austin lost their flyhalf, Callum Cook, to a bicep injury ten minutes into the match.
In the second half, Ramanumano kicked two more goals for Austin, while Davidson did all the damage for the Harlequins, scoring a try, which he converted, and a penalty.
“We were out-enthused,” said Austin Head Coach Lachlan Ferguson. “I was quite happy with our defensive effort and we were very good at the set piece. But we were not as aggressive as Dallas at the breakdown and they did a good job playing for territory. Still, this was a really entertaining match to watch with two teams going toe-to-toe.”
Dallas Harlequins Head Coach Michael Engelbrecht echoed Ferguson’s boxing imagery, calling it “a real heavyweight bout. A real slugfest.”
Engelbrecht said he was pleased with his team’s performance, and how they
got something of an Austin monkey off their backs, as well.
“Our guys I think have been struggling a little with their confidence after being beaten up a bit in the Super League, and coming out on the short end against Austin a few times,” he said. “So to come off the field and realize, we could have won that game, I think does a lot for the team’s confidence.”
Austin Blacks 20
Pens: Ramanumano 5
Dallas Harlequins 20
Tries: Cameron, Davidson
Convs: Davidson 2
Pens: Davidson 2
Meanwhile the 3-1 Austin Huns traveled to Dallas to face the 2-2 Reds and were soundly defeated 35-6. Dallas got a bit of a boost with fullback Kelly Kolberg coming back from injury to play his first match in some time. Kolberg made some key cover tackles, but the real work on a clear, excellent day for running rugby, was put in by the Dallas tight five.
“Our front five played exceptionally well,” said Dallas club president Jeff Kolberg. “And we all improved from that Fort Worth game [Feb 2]. We kept our mouths shut and just played our game.”
Flyhalf Jordan Macey was solid, too, scoring two tries and kicking well also.
Kolberg had his kindest words for referee John Shafto, who, he said, kept a
very fast game moving smoothly and without incident.
With the victory, Dallas jumps to 17 points, and stays ahead of the Harlequins thanks to points difference.
Here are the unofficial Texas standings, with the HARC v Fort Worth result not reported yet.
|Texas DI Men League||