Following their 17-10 loss to Gonzaga in the previous week, the Pride of Perry Street Prep returned to their winning ways against a game and determined Eleanor Roosevelt side. Following injuries and a need to develop some depth, the Pride’s starting lineup saw several changes (hooker, 2nd row, flanker, scrumhalf, wings and fullback) from the previous week.
Despite sitting at the bottom of the MAVRC standings, Roosevelt came to play and from the first whistle showed they still had plenty of fight left in them.
The Pride opened scoring at the 10 minute mark, off a penalty play. Prop Tyrell Stevenson crashed through several defenders from 40 meters out and won the footrace to the tryline. Fullback Justin Owens was good for the conversion. The Pride scored again a couple of minutes later off of a weak side scrum move that was initially stopped by Roosevelt. Wing Christian Adams, usually a flanker but playing his first game on wing, went into the ruck, picked the ball and raced down the blindside to score under the posts. 12-0.
Over the next 10 minutes, both teams stymied each others efforts with stout defense. Roosevelt had several line breaks but solid open-field tackling by fullback Justin Owens kept them out of the try zone. Owens, who is normally a scrumhalf, showed his versatility with a solid performance at the back. Roosevelt closed out the scoring for the half as they forwards punched the ball in from 5 meters. 12-5 Pride. The first score of the 2nd half was the result of a Roosevelt penalty kick out of bounds that failed to find touch. Through a remarkable display of alertness and athleticism the ball was kept in play by Pride flyhalf Jihad Khabir, who tapped it into the waiting hands of Adams. The wing stiffed-armed the first defender and raced the 70 meters for his second try of the afternoon to make it 17-5.
Roosevelt answered back several minutes later with and excellent effort from their centers to burst through the middle 17-10.
The Pride replied on the ensuing kickoff when outside center John Murray fielded the kick and burst through several defenders before setting the ruck. Khabir picked the ball and stepped his way through several defenders on his way to the tryline. 22-10. Several minutes later the Pride used their long throw lineout to strike again. Adams had moved back into the forwards and he took the throw and scooted in under the posts. Khabir slotted the conversion to make it 29-10, and hit a penalty soon after to increase the score to 32-10.
The Pride's final scoring of the night came off a 5-meter scrum that went out to Khabir at flyhalf. Finding himself with a flat line and not many options, Khabir turned it back inside and fed Christian Adams for his fourth. 37-10.
While the scoreline might imply the Pride had dominated this game, Roosevelt showed tremendous heart and were just a dropped ball, missed pass or unbeaten final defender away from adding to their score. The Pride got back on the winning side, but struggled with their depth. With games against Dematha and Warrenton this week and Model School the following, they need to build up their reserves in their closing games to bolster their chances at a MAVRC playoff run and championship rematch with Gonzaga.
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