Defense, Kotze Powers Jackals to Victory
ATLANTA, GA – The Dallas Jackals diminished Rugby ATL’s playoff hopes after winning 27-19 at Silverbacks Park on Saturday afternoon. Dewald Kotze scored two critical tries that shifted momentum into Dallas’ hands, earning him Man of the Match honors. Sam Golla and Tomy Malanos ran in tries while Martin Elias anchored the kicking.
The Jackals nearly scored on the match’s opening phase. They drove across the pitch until a untimely penalty nullified Dallas’ try attempt.
The Pack controlled the first 11 minutes. They kept ATL deep in their territory. Despite possession favoring Dallas 65% to 35%, the Jackals were unable to break through.
The sides headed into the first hydration break at 0-0.
A late turnover on the Dallas side of the pitch led to the first points of the afternoon. ATL deflected a Dallas punt and capitalized with a.overlap to push the ball toward the sidelines before ATL’s Te Rangatira Waitokia scored.
Dallas quickly responded. With support from seemingly everyone on the side, Kotze dove into the try zone at the 36th minute. Elias added a drop goal in the dying minutes of the half and Dallas led 8-7 entering the sheds.
ATL responded quickly in the second half to go ahead 12-8.
Sam Golla countered with a try after battling up and down ATL’s try line. Elias converted for the full seven points.
Dallas fended off the ensuing ATL phase that came within 10 meters of scoring. They followed strong defense with impressive offense.
Kotze, assisted by nearly everyone on pitch, extended Dallas’ lead pin the 67th minute to 20-12.
Malanos registered his second bonus try of the season, making the scoreline 27-12 a few minutes later.
In a last push, ATL scored a bonus try that made the score 27-19.
Kotze was named the man of the match.
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