Falcons win, Hawks lose in NA4
May 10, 2007

The US Falcons faced Canada East in the first match of a NA4 double-header Wednesday at Stanford University with the Hawks tackling Canada West in the late game. The Falcons scored a 20-5 victory, while the Hawks fell 32-20.

Play did not come outside the US Falcons' 22m for the first three minutes of the first game as Canada East kicked off and followed up with intensity. Although under pressure, the Americans chose to counter rather than clear, turning the ball over in the attempt and giving away a penalty. The first kick at goal from the touchline was missed by Derek Daypuck.

Both sides committed basic errors as they tried to settle: no tidy lineouts or scrums and several missed touch-finders. The only points in the first half came from the boot of Mike Hercus, who gave his side a 6-0 lead at halftime. Tries by Chris Wyles and Tasi Mounga, along with a couple of Hercus conversions, in the second forty finally put the issue beyond doubt.

In the second game, Canada West held off a late Hawks' challenge to post a 12-point win. The Canadians went to the main break leading 8-6, the Hawks' points coming from two penalty goals by flyhalf Nese Malifa.

Canada West skipped out to a 25-6 lead midway through the second half with three unanswered tries, but the Hawks finally started to get into a rhythm and closed the gap to 25-13 when Malifa converted his own try. One more five-pointer for the Canadians extended the lead to 32-13, before Malifa completed his double and added the conversion for the final scoreline.

The Falcons (2-0) and Canada West (2-0) share top spot in the standings ahead of Canada East (0-2) and the Hawks (0-2). All four teams will be back in action again on Saturday.

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