MLR Week 1, First XV of the Week
MLR Week 1, First XV of the Week
By Aaron Castro, League Correspondent
1. Loosehead Prop, Kellen Gordon (Seattle Seawolves) – Moving over from his natural position at hooker, he held the scrum up on the loose side against the new San Diego Tighthead Aaron Mitchell.
2. Hooker, Mike Brown (Austin Elite) – The new addition from Rugby United New York displayed his scrummaging skills as Austin gained parity throughout the match — not losing a single ball on restarts when scrum-half Michael Reid fed him the ball.
3. Tighthead Prop, Tim Metcher (Seattle Seawolves) – The former Melbourne Rebels prop showed his strength in scrummaging against San Diego as he was able to earn multiple penalties that eventually led to three penalty tries.
4. Left Lock, Ben Mitchell (Austin Elite) – The lineout abilities of the Irishman continued to impress for Austin against their toughest opponent of the season.
5. Right Lock, Charlie Hewitt (Houston SaberCats) – Charlie’s strengths first came in the lineout as he came down with the ball multiple times. His ability to drive the scrum forward allowed Houston to win every put-in by Conor Murphy.
6. Blindside Flanker, Chris Turori (San Diego Legion) – Chris Turori’s strengths with the ball in hand was an impressive sight to see, causing multiple fissures through the Seattle defense as he broke through the gainline multiple times.
7. Openside Flanker, Hanco Germishuys (Austin Elite) – Hanco’s vision, balance, and footwork along the touchline allowed him to evade multiple tacklers from the Raptors to score a try in the second half. Â This brought Austin back into the game as they began to take advantage of their man advantage over the Raptors.
8. No 8., Sebastian Kalm (NOLA Gold) – Sebastian continues to showcase his skills as one of the top No. 8s in the country with his ability to complete tackles in the open field and punish defenders with the ball in hand.
9. Scrum-half, Shaun Davies (Glendale Raptors) – The Raptors Captain’s skills continue to improve from the last Americas Rugby Championship campaign. With the addition of box kicks and carries out of the ruck, Shaun continues to add weapons to his aggressive skillset.
10. Fly-half, Will Magie (Glendale Raptors) – Will’s downfield kicking gave the Raptors the ability to dominate the field position game. On offense he continued to show the offensive weapon he’s become — making 100% of his conversion attempts.
11. Blindside Wing, Harley Davidson (Glendale Raptors) – Harley continues to show how gifted he is as a younger winger. The balance with the ball in hand allows his smaller frame to glide around defenders and make meters and tries for Glendale.
12. Inside Center, JP Eloff (NOLA Gold) – Moving from the Fullback position to inside center, JP was an offensive powerhouse scoring a try, a try assist, and scoring nine points by converting three penalty kicks.
13. Outside Center, Anthony Salaber (San Diego Legion) – The Cal product showed the polish that comes with playing from four years at Berkeley under coach Jack Clark. Anthony is always in position to make positive meters.
14. Openside Wing, Josua Vici (Houston SaberCats) – Electric with the ball in hand, Josua evaded six would-be Gold defenders to score a try from mid-field.
15. Fullback, Mat Turner (Seattle Seawolves)- Turner showed his offensive and defensive abilities seemingly being in the right place to both make it past the gainline when carrying the ball and timely tackles on defense.
NOLA Gold will now host Austin Elite Rugby at home on Saturday,
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No. 8 Cam Dolan, outside center Tristan Blewett and fullback JP Eloff
The Gold held off the Utah Warriors 28-19 at home on Saturday
The league-leading NOLA Gold return home on Saturday to clash with the