Exiles defeat tough West End side
First Mid Atlantic Premier League Matchup
In cold, wet and blustery conditions, the Maryland Exiles got on track for their first official Mid-Atlantic Premier League match in style. West End didn't waste any time displaying their class scoring a try through their forwards five minutes into the game. However, as the Exiles exerted pressure and moved the ball into the West End half, Adam Tounkara was able to go over after picking the ball up from the base of a scrum. The conversion hit the post, and the game was tied five all. Then minutes later, a counter attack started by Joseph Zarrelli and Noah Lucas went through the hands and found Haarvard Hansen. The Flyhalf showed the ball and then stepped the defense. As the cover defense converged, the ball was sent wide to Keagan O'Connell. Quinn Freeman managed the difficult conversion and the Exiles were in front 12-5.
The minutes later however, poor ruck defense led to a soft West End try, and the score tightened to 12-10. The Exiles went back to work. Following another counter attack, the Exiles put the ball through five phases and into the hands of Team Captain Tristan McAlister. Tristan was knocked down, but not held in the tackle. So he was able to scramble to his feet and touch down for a try that Quinn Freeman as able to convert. And the Exiles were not finished. Just before halftime, Andrew Engel was able to pick a ball from the base of a midfield ruck, hit a soft spot in the West End defense, step the covering Full Back, and race for a try under the posts. Quinn Freeman's conversion made the halftime score 26-10.
Halftime saw the Exiles really step up their defense and increase the line speed when West End had the ball. This defensive effort led to an opportunity for Scrumhalf Aiden Howe to quick tap a penalty and go over from twenty meters out. Freeman hit another conversion to extend the Exiles lead to 33-10. However, West End was able to deliver a brilliant play three minutes later. West End were able to turn the corner on the defense and then chipped the ball ahead towards the middle of the field. It was regathered by West End for an unconverted try. Game on -- Maryland Exiles 33 West End 15.
Aiden Howe was able to convert another opportunity into points, as he took another quick tap penalty over the line for the final try of the day. Quinn Freeman hit the conversion kick. Final Score: Maryland Exiles 40 -- West End 15.