TORONTO ARROWS vs. HOUSTON SABERCATS – April 21, 2019: Home Game Two Goes the Right Way For Arrows
BarnBurner Sports Writer
Sunday, April 21, 2019
TORONTO ARROWS 35 – HOUSTON SABERCATS 21 FINAL
TORONTO, ON – A big win for the Toronto Arrows in front of not only a home crowd, but in front of some special family members as well. Sam Malcolm, the young Back from New Zealand, had some family members from home at the match to see him play and kick a few conversions.
“It’s always good to see some familiar faces [in the crowd],” said Sam post-game. “It’s awesome for them to come out and support me and support my team. They’ve been a big part of my career and for them to be able to see one of my games in Toronto is pretty special.”
It was the right game for them to see.
Kolby Francis got the Arrows on the board with an early try and caused a turnover off a well-played ruck at around the 10:30 mark.
Toronto scored four tries in the first 20 minutes to jump out to a 21-0 lead before the first hydration break.
The Sabercats finally came to life late in the 1st half and scored a pair of hard-working tries, the first from Zachary Pangelinan off a good scrum victory that preceded a hard-right flank to get past the Arrows’ defence.
Patrick O’Toole scored the second try just before the end of the half after Osea Kolinisau made a strong cut out left to gain the space he needed to make the pass to O’Toole.
The Sabercats continued their momentum into the 2nd half and tied the game off a penalty try before Arrows’ back Leandro Leivas jumped on a bad turnover. That led to Mike Sheppard punching in the go-ahead try around the 51st minute mark, which locked up a bonus-point win for the Arrows.
Toronto made a huge goal-line stop later in the half and Kainoa Lloyd picked up a loose ball and took it the distance to seal the victory.
The Arrows were able to use their entire lineup of subs in the match, something that VP and GM Mark Winokur was happy they were able to do.
“We’ve got 36 guys under contract and we said at the beginning ‘Listen, you guys are all a part of this. You’re all going to play a role. We don’t know when, but at some point you’re all going to step in and help us win games’ and they’ve all been able to do that.” Winokur told BarnBurner.ca post-game. “For us, that’s a big plus. We think we’re deeper than some of the teams in MLR and our depth really helps us.”
Winokur felt it was a good game, but is still looking for the team to improve on discipline and tightening up their game as they prepare for next week’s matchup against the 7-3 Seattle Seawolves.