USA National Rugby Team


US Scores 10 in Final Minutes to Down Canada 18-17

(Toronto, Canada) 19 June 1999 -- Capping a 10-point rally in the final eight minutes, Kevin Dalzell squirted through a narrow gap to notch an injury-time time try and then converted his own score, giving the visiting United States an 18-17 win over Canada in an Epson Cup match before 4,300 at Fletcher's Fields in Markham, Ontario.

Dalzell raced ten yards for the score, diving in just ahead three Canadians lunging at his feet.

Moments earlier, Dalzell had kicked a 30-yard penalty goal to draw the Eagles within six, 17-11. His third try this season and subsequent conversion sends the second-placed US to 3-1, while dropping Canada 0-4.

"When I saw the hole, I knew I had to make it to the line. The team worked so hard for the win," Dalzell said at game's end moments later.

John Graf had a chance to retake the contest for Canada in the final minutes, but missed an close-range penalty goal attempt.

In a tense encounter, the hosts began quickly, using a 15-mph wind to lodge a Bob Ross penalty goal at four minutes and a converted Graf try after nine. The veteran scrumhalf burrowed over the right-hand corner to foil a long US defensive stand in the midfield.

Dalzell then surprisingly missed a short penalty goal, but with Luke Gross, Alec Parker, and Dan Lyle dominating the lineout, the US scrambled back into the contest. A clever Dalzell dummy pass and run through the midfield sprung Vaea Anitoni for a 55-yard try on the occasion of his 39th international appearance, a US record he shares with Tom Billups.

In the second half, the US dominated possession and position, but David Lougheed's 62d-minute try gave Canada a lead it held until late in the game.

"I'm pleased that we didn't play our best rugby and still found a way to win," US head coach Jack Clark said after the match.

Nearing the end of a long road swing, the US departs tomorrow for Apia, to play 1-1-1 Samoa next weekend.

Final score: United States 18-17 (halftime Canada 10-8)

United States: Tries: Vaea Anitoni, Kevin Dalzell
      Conversions: Kevin Dalzell
      Penalty goals: Kevin Dalzell (2)

Canada: Tries: John Graf, David Lougheed
      Conversions: Bob Ross, John Graf
      Penalty goals: Bob Ross

United States: Chris Morrow; Vaea Anitoni, Alatini Saulala (Mark Scharrenberg), Juan Grobler, Brian Hightower; David Niu (Mark Williams), Kevin Dalzell; Joe Clayton (Bill LeClerc), Tom Billups, George Sucher, Luke Gross (Philippe Farner), Alec Parker, Dave Hodges, Richard Tardits, Dan Lyle (captain).

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Scott Compton
USA National Rugby Team
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