White Plains (18-25) Village Lions
The first match of the season saw White Plains test out their new side against a strong Village Lions. A strong showing from both sides, it was White Plains errors that was the difference on the final score.
In the first half the Lions struck first with a run from Lions flanker through the middle and set up center, Bryan McCorkle for the score. White Plains #14 Connor McCauley struck a pair of penalty kicks to put White Plains within 1. The Lions scored again in the 26th minute and went in to the half up 12-6.
White Plains was able to score their first try of the season 5 minutes into the second half with a strong centers attack and Flyhalf Zach White finishing to put the Warpigs within a point again(11-12). Unfortunately the errors started to add up and the Lions drew a penalty try in the 55th minute seeing flanker James Tregurtha sent off with a yellow.
"When a team makes a total of 19 errors throughout a game, coming out on top becomes almost impossible," Head coach Chris Dahlem commented. "We gave away 3 tries, 1 of which was a penalty try, on our own errors. The Lions maintained possession, but never really applied pressure to break our defense."
The Warpig backline looked very promising, consistently breaking the Lion defense at set pieces. Lead by vice-captain Onye Onwukanjo, the backline defense was practically impenetrable under very hot conditions. "He is a total gift to the sport of rugby," Dahlem praised about Onwukanjo. "To lead that way from the front as a 20 year old in this league is just incredible."
With 15 mintues left the Lions were up 11 after a PK from fullback Pak Hang Chan. White Plains drove down the field and #8 Andrew Ianna scored in the corner. McCauley hit the converted try for White Plains to be within 4.
Unfortunately that was the closest White Plains would get before the final whistle. Chan would hit another penalty kick for the Village Lions to keep White Plains within 7 and the final score of the game.
While the Warpigs did achieve a bonus point for their efforts, all players and coaches are moving forward to prepare for the big rivalry match against Old Blue this Saturday night at White Plains High School. The match is the main event for the annual JoJo Moore Weekend. "Games against Old Blue require our players to give everything for 80 minutes. They don't really get much bigger than this. We will regroup this week and our players will play with a sense of urgency and passion that will bring us to that next level."
White Plains vs Old Blue
Saturday September 17th
7:00 PM @ Loucks Field (White Plains High School)