The Toronto Arrows loses close game at York Lions Stadium

Toronto Arrows and the Seattle Seawolves battle for the Ball on April 22, 2023

The Toronto Arrows loses a close game as they were unable to close the deal as the Seattle Seawolves came from behind to win at York Lions Stadium. There were more positives than in the previous game against the New England Free Jacks, but still unable to get a result.

Toronto Arrows loses close game to the Seattle Seawolves

Three keys to the game

Seattle Seawolves made some big defensive plays

The Seattle Seawolves made some big defensive plays throughout the game. There were two notable ones, including one late in the game.

  • In the 29-minute, James Malcolm denied D’Shawn Bowen a try as he played a big role in Bowen dropping the ball.
  • The Seattle Seawolves’ defence in the last 10-15 minutes made it difficult for Toronto to find a way to score.

This combined with the Arrows making a lot of mistakes and giving up too many turnovers, played a role in the Arrows losing this game against the Seattle team. Seattle, to give them credit, found a way to dig into another level that Toronto was not able to compete with late in the game.

Too many Toronto Arrows turnovers

There were too many Toronto Arrows turnovers and a lack of discipline, especially late in the game.

  • Turning over the ball in the 66-minute when having possession and also giving up a penalty.
  • Mason Flesch made a good run in the 64-minute but did not get the support as Seattle got the ball back.

They also lacked discipline late in the game as they committed some penalties late in the game when they could not afford to.

Seattle Seawolves was able to break through the Toronto Arrows defence

In some of the tries, it felt like the Toronto defence could not keep up with Seattle’s speed.

  • South African Dan Kriel was able to get past most of the Arrows’ defence before passing the ball to USA Rugby player, Riekert Hattingh, for the try.
  • Seattle was given a lot of space as Martin Iosefo scored a try to open the game.

In some of these tries the Arrows gave up too much space, however, credit to Seattle for taking advantage of it. Ben Mitchell’s try, for example, was scored thanks to terrific positioning in the maul after the lineout and some great physicality led to Hattingh’s try in the 42-minute.

Game Summary

It was a much better game than the one the Toronto Arrows lost against the New England Free Jacks. Unfortunately, they were not able to play 80 minutes, as in the last 10-15 minutes, they had trouble making plays and were making too many turnovers and committing too many penalties. Still, there were some notable players, especially in the first half.

Rugby Canada player, Ross Braude, scored two tries for Toronto and almost played a significant role in Bowen scoring a try in the first half. This is while Shane O’Leary converted his first two penalty conversions to keep the Arrows in the game against the Seawolves early on. There was also a big defensive play made by Mitch Richardson late in the game, which came a few minutes before Braude’s second try. This gave the Arrows the 20-14 lead straight after the first half.

Still, there are some things to improve on as we are now at the halfway point of the Arrows 2023 MLR season.

Games Coming Up For Both Teams

Unfortunately, for the Arrows, this was a tough three-game homestand. Losing all three games at York Lions Stadium, and only getting bonus points against Rugby New York means that making the playoffs will be a very tall task. They can still do it (all the teams except the New England Free Jacks as a winning record under .500), but they cannot focus on that goal right now. They need to start getting results and wins; if that happens, they might have a chance.

As for the Seattle Seawolves, after losing two straight games, they now won their seventh game of the season. Additionally, with Seattle scoring at least four tries, they got bonus points on the road in the East, never an easy thing to do.

The Arrows have seven games left, two on the road. One of them will be against the NOLA Gold at The Gold Mine in New Orleans. That game will be shown on April 30 on Yurview, TRN, and App. This is while the Seattle Seawolves end their month with a home game against the Dallas Jackals at 10:00 PM ET, which will be shown live on FS1.


Photo Credit: Marc Emyé of the Toronto Arrows on April 22, 2023.