Arrows Too Sharp, Seawolves Drop Away Match in Week 5

18-Apr-2021

Photo by Ben Weitz

MARIETTA, GEORGIA (April 17, 2021) - The Seattle Seawolves traveled to Marietta, Georgia to face the Toronto Arrows at their temporary home for the 2021 season. After a narrow victory over Utah last week, the Seawolves were looking to maintain a strong showing in their fourth away match of the season. The 7:30 AM PT kick off didn’t help the visiting team in what ended as a large deficit loss to the clinical Canadian side, 7-52 Toronto Arrows.

Seattle kicked off to start the first half as the Arrows executed a smart exit strategy that they implemented all match long. A penalty against Seattle gave Toronto the first attacking opportunity as they exploited a shooting Seattle defender to score. Kick was good, 0-7 Toronto at the 3rd minute. A handling error on an attempt to field a high kick awarded Toronto a scrum opportunity, which they made the most of with an inside pass that opened up space outside for the Arrows to strike again. Kick after was good, 0-14 Toronto at the 8th minute. A few positive phases of play for Seattle were stalled by an offsides call, allowing the Arrows to kick a penalty for 3 points. 0-17 Toronto at the 15th minute. Toronto lost the ball forward for a Seattle scrum that turned into a driving maul attempt, but no forward progress could be made, and the Arrows got the ball back. A high box kick was knocked on by Seattle with advantage played to Toronto. A turnover and counterattack from Seattle pushed the visitors into Toronto’s half and another knock on prevented Seattle’s scoring opportunities. Toronto attempted to exit but their kick stayed in play and followed suit was a penalty. Fullback Ben Cima kicked to touch to set up a Seattle line out on Toronto’s 10-meter line. A strong run from wing Sitiveni Tamaivena allowed Seattle to knock on the door for their first try of the match but a penalty in the breakdown kept them off the scoreboard. Back and forth kicks from both teams ended in the Arrows back on attack and a few missed tackles showed Toronto the try zone. Kick was good, 0-24 Toronto at the 28th minute. Shortly after, flanker Andrew Durutalo came off for an injury after having an impact in the first quarter of play, replaced by Tommy Clark. Neither team scored before the first half came to a close, 0-24 Toronto.

Toronto kicked to Seattle in the second half as Seattle set up an exit opportunity to get out of their own half. Toronto fielded the kick and played quick, attacking space in the midfield for a clean line break. Scoring their fourth try under the sticks, no kick was needed. 0-31 Toronto at the 45thminute. The Seawolves marched down into Arrows’ territory and what looked to be a reaching try from flyhalf Kieran Joyce wasn’t awarded, and the play was brought back for a Seattle penalty. After multiple scrums, Cima kicked to touch for a line out that finally allowed Seattle to find their way over the try line with a driving maul. Hooker Mike Shepherd crossed over and Cima added the extra points, 7-31 Toronto at the 53rd minute. Arrows got back on their offensive front foot, after a successful set piece play from their line out set up another Toronto try. Kick was good, 7-38 at the 53rd minute. Flat passes from Seattle were picked off by Toronto, and even with a reactive defensive effort, the Arrows scored once more. Kick was good, 7-45 at the 63rd minute. With the win climbing out of reach for Seattle, a bit of chat to the referee from lock Rhyno Herbst gave Toronto an easy penalty. Luckily Toronto knocked the ball on and a chance to play with a bit of pride saw scrumhalf Devereaux Ferris quick tapped after a penalty at the scrum, breaking up field and then kicking to try and catch the Arrows off guard. After carrying the ball for about 30 meters to the halfway line, Toronto lost the ball in contact and awarded Seattle a scrum. A miscue by Seattle put the ball on the ground as Toronto rushed forward to collect. Pressure and technical kicks by the Arrows set up their final scoring opportunity of the match with a kick to follow, 7-52 Toronto. There was no lack of effort from the Seawolves in the final minutes of the match, but turnovers and penalties kept them at 7 points in a loss to the Arrows. Final score was 7-52, Toronto.

Tries:
Shepherd 53’

Conversions:
Cima 53’

The Seattle Seawolves now with a 1-4 record will need to lock in a win next weekend in Austin, Texas to catch up to the rest of the Western Conference. Facing the Austin Gilgronis (2-2), it’s the final away match in their five-match road sprint before playing at home May 2. Kickoff is on Sunday, April 25 at 4:00 PM PT on ROOT SPORTS and The Rugby Network.