The U17 Academy of Cordoba defeated the High School All Americans 25-18 Thursday at the Cordoba Jockey Club in the first match of the HSAA team's four-match tour of Argentina.
Despite the intense cold, a large crowd came out to see the tourists, and the Americans did not disappoint. They did very well at the breakdown and spent a large portion of the game in the Cordoba half. That results in a penalty by Ben Cima four minutes in, and then lock Siaosi Mahoni went close to the line and then Malcom May picked up and scored (this is a correction from our earlier report which said Mahoni scored). Cima converted to make it 10-0 after nine minutes.
Perhaps feeling they could score at will, the High School All Americans found that Cordoba redoubled their defensive efforts. The tourists spent more time in the Cordoba end, but could not break through for more points.
This proved crucial, as just before halftime Cordoba regained some momentum and some continuity - thanks in part to the sin-binning of HSAA flanker Malcolm May, and tied the game. Wing Lautaro Boll slotted a penalty and then, right from the restart, the Cordoba squad put together a dazzling try off a counterattack that saw several players just dodge out of the way of American tacklers. Fullback Eugenio Achili made a huge run up the wing, was just pushed into touch, but at the last second was able to offload to scrumhalf Nicolas Cantarutti, who dished to hooker Juan Romano for a brilliant try. Bill's conversion made it 10-10 at halftime.
The momentum was clearly with the hosts and they used it. With their scrum showing some ascendency, Cordoba also did better at the rucks, not getting pushed back as much. Their defense swarmed, and all that produced points.
Agustin Rubiolo quick-tapped on a HSAA penalty and passed to wing Juan Cruz Coyaube for a try five minutes into the second half. Boll's conversion made it 17-10.
But the HSAA team came back.
At 11 minutes, prop Valdemar Lee-Lo bulled over for a try to make it 17-15. And after some concerted pressure by the HSAA team, Cima slotted a goal to put the Americans back in the lead 18-17.
However, Cordoba would have the last word. Imanol Martinez went over to get the hosts back in front, and Boll sealed it with a penalty with nine minutes to go.
the final moments were again punctuated by the HS All Americans throwing everything at the Cordoba defense. The hosts held.
In the end it was a good performance in many ways for the tourists, who did not wilt even after they gave up 17 straight points. But they will be disappointed in not getting more reward for dominating possession and field position in the first half.
Córdoba: 1)Sanchez, Agustín, 2)Romano, Juan, 3) Piastrellini, Franco, 4) Gonzalez, Bruno, 5)Bello, Eduardo, 6)Casutti, Franco, 7)Roura, Conrado, 8)Paniagua, Manuel, 9)Cantarutti, Nicolás, 10)Aybar, Julián, 11)Boll, Lautaro, 12)Mallía, Juan Cruz, 13)Gabellieri, Conrado, 14)Coyaube, Juan Cruz, y 15)Achili, Eugenio.
Reserves: Caballero Manuel; Facundo Tejeda; Bruera Federico; Goren Matías; Deheza José; Olmedo Ernesto; Rubiolo Agustín; Bazan Velez Lautaro; Grimaut Franco; Martinez Imanol.
Coaches: Fernando Interdonato, Germán Cagnolo, José Luna.
High School All Americans: 1) Lamositele, Titi, 2) Branham, Steven, 3) Lee-Lo, Valdemar, 4) Mahoni, Siaosi, 5) Allen, Justin, 6)May, Malcom, 7)Germishuys, Hanco, 8)Helu, Viliami, 9)Reid, Michael, 10)Cima, Benjamin, 11)Tikoisuva, Joeli, 12)Whiting, Calvin, 13)Halliman, Seth, 14)Matthews, Aaron, y 15)Webber, Zach.
Reserves: Suwaiter Poch for Germishuys; John Marti for Lee-Lo; Andy Naylor for Allen; Anthony Fotu for Helu; Reed Hayen for Mahoni
Coaches: Salty Thompson, Michael Engerbrecht, Paul Barford.
HS All Americans 18
Tries: May, Lee-Lo
Pens: Cima 2
Cordoba Academy 25
Tries: Romano, Cauyaube, Martinez
Convs: Boll 2
Pens: Boll 2