Old Glory fall to Free Jack’s in a hectic Boston battle


Both Old Glory and New England came into this match looking to bounce back from a tough loss, but as both teams had equal records it was hard to predict who might take the spoils in Quincy. New England ultimately won out in what proved to be a totally chaotic, back and forth match which exhibited Old Glory’s endemic heart and fight.

Old Glory were quick out of the gates, attacking with gusto and venom from the word go. Bonilla’s kicking controlled themidfield from the offset, finding space and yards with his creative punts. This kicking also heralded our first try of the day. An Old Glory lineout was followed by its customary maul, from which Danny Tusitala spread the ball wide to Bonilla, who in turn kicked wide cross field to William Talataina, who dove in to complete the move after just eight minutes.

That would be about the extent of Old Glory’s joy in the first half, however, as New England began to grow into the game, returning the favor with a try of their own just four minutes later. A missed conversion allowed Old Glory to hold onto the lead, and the lead was extended when Bonilla kicked a penalty from close range to make the score 10-5 in DC’s favor after 24 minutes.

From there, Old Glory found themselves on the back foot for the remainder of the first half, defending hard for several minutes. They managed to hold up one Free Jack’s try attempt, but ultimately conceded two more, going into halftime down 10-19. A yellow card to New England’s Conor Keys gave Old Glory the man advantage in the late stages of the first half, but they did not manage to capitalise on that before the break.

The New England onslaught continued with a fourth try of the day just after halftime, but another booking came to bite the high-flying Free Jacks. Old Glory took full advantage of the sin-bin advantage to score back-to-back tries from lineout mauls, tying the game at the 60-minute mark.

Unsurprisingly, the expiration of the yellow card saw New England grow back into the game. Old Glory’s defence was resolute, but so too was the Free Jacks offense, which was absolutely relentless, scoring again to take the score to 24-31 with ten minutes remaining. A long range penalty from Potroz shortly after put the match that little bit further out of reach.

Old Glory never quit, however. Jesse Parete got a little overeager with the afters and bagged himself a second yellow card in the 80th minute. Old Glory took full advantage of the confusion that followed, bagging a try just before full time to pull within three points of New England.

A frenetic final few minutes followed as Old Glory threw everything at New England in an attempt to win at the death, but an ill-fated grubber saw the ball lost and put out for full time.

The full time score came to 31-34 in New England’s favor, though Old Glory will take a bonus point each for scoring four tries and finishing within seven points of the victors.

Old Glory will fall to fourth in the MLR Eastern Conference now, and return to Segra Field next week to host the Toronto Arrows in their fourth match of the season.

-by Arthur Ferridge,


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