SFGG Holds Off Santa Monica

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

San Francisco Golden Gate defeated Santa Monica 43-17 on Saturday to stay in the hunt for a place in the PRP final, but it wasn’t a walkover.

In a game played as part of the PRP Mid-Season Clash at Treasure Island in San Francisco, Santa Monica unveiled some of the team’s best offensive efforts in the game and, if not for a series of unforced errors, could have been in a position to win the game.

“We felt we gave them about 21 points,” Santa Monica center Shawn Lee said.

Certainly seven of those points came on a soft turnover, but penalties and poor exit strategies (kicking into the wind instead of using the cross breeze) also hurt the Dolphins.

For SFGG, the game was enough, but that was basically it.

“We’ve played better,” head coach Neil Foote said. “We didn’t help ourselves and sometimes were a little frustrated. We scored that try early and I think we thought it was going to be easy. There are no easy games in this league.”

Full Match Replay: PRP Round 7 SFGG vs. Santa Monica:

Full Match Replay: SFGG vs Santa Monica

Unlock this video, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In


A lovely setup from Moto Filikitonga put wing Lisiate Huihui away down the sideline for a try barely two minutes into the first half. SFGG went right back on the offensive but seemed a little too in love with the idea that its scrum was stronger than that of Santa Monica. A series of penalties inside the Dolphins’ 22, some very kickable, were instead run as scrums.

“I don’t know if calling for eight straight scrums was such a good idea,” captain Brendan Daly said. 

Finally, after about seven minutes camped in the Santa Monica end, Golden Gate scored off a scrum, with No. 8 Akuila Uaisele picking it up from the base and diving over.

Battling a stiff cross breeze, Santa Monica had trouble getting into SFGG territory. But 27 minutes in the Dolphins got some good go-forward and quick hands out to Quinn Perry saw the fullback beat three defenders with a dummy and two cutbacks to score under the posts.

It was a good example of what Santa Monica can do. But so was a fairly egregious series in which the Dolphins kept flinging the ball around near their 22, and eventually, such silliness produced a loose ball that bounced into the hands of SFGG center Eakalafi Okusi, who cruised around and into the corner to give his team a 19-7 halftime lead.

Two minutes into the second half it was 24-7 as a bullocking run from prop Nathan Sylvia set up a pick-and-dive from Uaisele for the No. 8’s second of the day.

Santa Monica pressured after that but had trouble getting enough bodies to the breakdown to sustain the effort. Down 24-7, Santa Monica needed to score quickly and had a chance with an attacking lineout, but a superb jump from SFGG lock Nick Grass—who was effective all day—put a stop to that. SFGG rebounded with a break from Filikitonga and then Daly burst through from a more backline position, dummied away a defender, and was in for a try.

Finally, the Dolphins got that try, working a tap penalty move that owed much to Perry’s brilliant catch-and-pass to set up Allan Corruth in the corner. By this time SFGG was down two men due to yellow cards, and Santa Monica made that count. Sustained pressure ended with scrumhalf Victor Woo sliding in under everyone, cutting SFGG's lead to 29-17.

At this point, SFGG looked a bit at sea and Santa Monica had some momentum. But a knock-on at the ensuing restart gave SFGG some hope. When Daly and scrumhalf Colby Stevens saw the Dolphins had their fullback up, Stevens popped a perfect box kick that the captain chased down and gathered to score.

“I saw it was going to bounce so I held back so whichever way it went I could change my line, and I got lucky,” Daly explained.

The try proved to be crucial—as it regained momentum for SFGG—and the hosts capped it off with a good team try scored by Tevia Okusi.

For Santa Monica, it was a game of opportunities squandered and chances given to the opposition. While for SFGG, it was a showcase of some moments of brilliance mixed with header-scratchers. Daly was named the player of the game and deservedly so, but Stevens at scrumhalf and flanker Langilangi Haupeakui were outstanding also—the latter was a terror in contact.

SFGG improves to 4-2-1 and keeps pace with Belmont Shore in the chase for second. Santa Monica drops to 1-6.

SFGG 43

Tries: Daly 2, L. Huihui, Uisaele 2, E. Okusi, T. Okusi

Convs: Stevens 4

Santa Monica 17

Tries: Perry, Corruth, Woo

Convs: Lee


Autumn Nations Cup Stock Report

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

You could be forgiven for thinking that the Northern hemisphere teams decided to play another Six Nations tournament in 2020, and added Georgia, perhaps on a trial basis. But no! 

Top 15 Players Of Autumn Nations Cup

England

The Autumn Nations Cup wasn’t just a measuring stick for international teams, but also a proving ground for players looking to either break into the national team or reestablish their place in it. For the four British Isles, it was also an audition for Warren Gatland’s 2021 British & Irish Lions team which heads to South Africa next summer. 

Top 5 Games From Autumn Nations Cup

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Now that it's over, it's all about the numbers.

Autumn Nations Cup Notebook: Fijian Flair Shows Up & Champions Crowned

England

If the first three rounds of the 2020 Autumn Nations Cup were labeled as slow, or too kick-heavy, the final weekend was anything but. 

England Prevails As Autumn Nations Cup Champs

Championship Replay: England vs France

Unlock this video, live events, and more with a subscription!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

It was supposed to be a cakewalk. It was supposed to be business as usual for Eddie Jones’ team in front of 2,000 spectators at Twickenham. 

How to Watch Autumn Nations Cup: Wales vs Italy

Wales vs Italy

Italy and Wales will face off for fifth place as they look to finish off their Autumn Nations Cup run with a win. 

How to Watch Autumn Nations Cup: Ireland vs Scotland

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

Both teams had some decent showings in pool play. Ireland's lone loss came to championship contender England in the second round in a hard fought contest. They will look to finish out the Autumn Nations Cup on a good note with a win over Scotland.

How to Watch England vs France In Autumn Nations Cup Championship

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

England and France will be looking to stay flawless at the Autumn Nations Cup as they meet with the title on the on line. 

Autumn Nations Cup Notebook: Stage Is Set For Massive Title Bout

Georgia

Round 3 was highlighted most by the efforts of the Georgians, who pushed Ireland for 80 minutes in Dublin. 

England Looking To Stay Perfect Against Wales

null

Create a free account to unlock this video!

Get Started

Already a subscriber? Log In

England has been rolling.