The USA Eagles overcame Brazil in a thriller in Texas this evening to get their ARC campaign back on track. Playing in Austin the Eagles were 33-28 winners and were made to avoid a late scare in the final minutes.
As was the case against the Argentina XV and Canada in rounds one and two, Brazil’s best offensive weapon was the scrum. Yet in the opening scrum of the match the USA were awarded a scrum from while Will Magie landed a penalty to open the scoring. Minutes later Magie would add a second before Josh Reeves slotted his first to make it a 6-3 scoreline.
Gathering kick-off’s had been an issue for both teams. This would be a theme throughout the opening half. Both teams were able to score points following the opposition’s inability to cleanly secure the restart. Reeves’ opening shot at goal was precisely a result of sloppy gathering of the ball from a kick-off.
The opening try followed, coming in the 22nd minute. Paul Lasike showed his ball-carrying excellence by bulldozing his way over an attempted tackle from Reeves. Maggie added the extras to give the Eagles a 10 point buffer. He would add a second five minutes later, doing so after an excellent team try was finished in the right corner by flanker Hanco Germishuys.
Good work from the Brazilian scrum saw Reeves lining-up three points. His 32nd minute strike was on target but there would be little time for celebrations. The restart was not gathered by Brazil which saw Germishuys swooping in and finding support from Mike Te’o. Magie was unable to land the sideline conversion.
In the final minutes of the half Brazil’s scrum continued to be dominant. With time up it would finally see Os Tupis finding their way to the try line. Brazil were kept trills by both the Argentina XV and Canada in their opening two ARC matches and would take another 40 minutes to end the drought. Scoring in his 50th cap was scrum-half Lucas Duque. Reeves added the extras to set-up a 25-13 half time scoreline.
Reeves’ accurate first half goal-kicking continued to open the second half. He would cut the Eagles lead to nine points tin the 42nd minute though would be off-target in the 61st minute when Brazil crossed for try number two. Scoring was the younger brother of Lucas Duque. In doing so Moisés Duque joined his brother in scoring a try in his 50th cap.
In between the tries from the Duque brothers the USA scored another try of their own. Scoring was John Quill who was on hand to link with Te’o who had made a clean break down the left flank. Magie would fail to land the conversion but with his 67th minute penalty he went 5 from 7 from the kicking-tee and gave the Eagles a 33-21 lead.
The home side would be forced to finish the match with 14-men. Ben Landry was yellow carded for foul play with just under 10 minutes remaining. Brazil capitalized with Matteo Dell’Acqua scoring from a meter point via a pick-and-go carry. Reeves landed from outwide to take his tally for the match up to 5 from 7 for the match and reduce the deficit to five points in what was a thrilling end to the match.
Both teams will play again next weekend. Brazil fly home to face Chile in Jundiaí while the Eagles will play host to Uruguay in Seattle, Washington.
Try: Lasike, Germishuys, Te’o, Quill
Conversion: Magie (2)
Penalty: Magie (3)
Yellow Card: Landry
Try: L Duque, M Duque, Dell’Acqua
Conversion: Reeves (2)
Penalty: Reeves (3)
Yellow Card: Abud
1 Chance Wenglewski, 2 James Hilterbrand, 3 Paul Mullen, 4 Nate Brakeley, 5 Nick Civetta, 6 John Quill, 7 Hanco Germishuys, 8 Cam Dolan, 9 Shaun Davies, 10 Will Magie, 11 Mike Te’o, 12 Paul Lasike, 13 Bryce Campbell, 14 Blaine Scully (capt.), 15 Marcel Brache
Replacements: 16 Dylan Fawsitt, 17 David Ainu’u, 18 Dino Waldren, 19 Ben Landry, 20 David Tameilau, 21 Kapeli Pifeleti, 22 Ruben de Haas, 23 Will Hooley
1 Lucas Abud, 2 Wilton Rebolo, 3 Jardel Vettorato, 4 Matteo Dell’Acqua, 5 Luiz Vieira, 6 Cléber Dias, 7 Arthur Bergo, 8 André Arruda, 9 Lucas Duque, 10 Josh Reeves, 11 Robert Tenório, 12 Moisés Duque, 13 Felipe Sancery (capt.), 14 Lucas Tranquez, 15 Daniel Sancery
Replacements: 16 Yan Rosetti, 17 Caíque Silva, 18 Pedro Bengaló, 19 Gabriel Paganini, 20 Alexandre Alves, 21 Douglas Rauth, 22 Lorenzo Massari, 23 Ariel Rodrigues