New York has a great rivalry with Baltimore and traveling to Baltimore on a hot and humid day in mid May and coming away with a win would be no easy task. This was compounded when Kwiatkowski and Spiteri went down with injuries in the first 2 minutes. However New York was able to overcome this and start well. There was a real focus on a strong start as the Magpies have traditionally been slow out of the blocks. In the first 10 minutes New York controlled the midfield through Desai, Taylor, Murphy and Martin which resulted in goals to Felsenthal and Walsh. However, just as quickly as NY was in control Baltimore made some adjustments and rested back the ascendancy booting two majors of their own at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter was a tight arm wrestle with both team’s back lines controlling the play. New York’s back six of Melo, Kyle, Thompson, Hawkins, Davis and Caine competed well and neither team could gain a clear advantage as the game was being played with tough, contested football all across the ground. Walsh and Ormsby notched up goals for NY, however, these were matched with Baltimore kicking 2 goals of their own and at the major break it was New York by only a few points.
The third quarter saw Baltimore come out firing and with their ruckman giving first use of the ball to the Baltimore midfield their confidence rose and they started to run and carry which gave them all the momentum. Baltimore went bang, bang and bang kicking 3 goals and looked to be on their way to an upset win. However the Magpies dug deep and collectively rose to the challenge. Hawkins moved into the ruck providing some real grunt and Donner, Walsh and Burke cut loose in the forward line. It was a remarkable change in the game and NY kicked 4 goals in 10 minutes with Burke booting 3 and Ormsby one to take a 10 point lead into the last change and all the momentum.
The last quarter was a war of attrition. Neither side could gain clear control of the play. Felsenthal kicked a long range goal which was matched by Baltimore a few minutes later. New York rallied again through Burke’s fourth for the day and with him marking everything that came his way NY was up by 15 with 5 minutes to go and seemingly in control.
Baltimore surged again and kicked truly bringing the margin down to 9 points. At this moment Kyle gave away a free kick in the goal square directly after the Baltimore goal which meant they kicked 2 goals in 10 seconds and were within 3 points with a few minutes left in the match. These final 3 minutes were frenetic with players from both teams giving their all and putting their bodies on the line. New York’s senior players lead from the front and ensured they slowed the game down and iced the clock. NY missed 2 shots late and held on to win by 5 points in what was a win of true character. The final score was New York 10.9 69 to Baltimore-Washington 9.10 64.
After the match injured captain and coach for the day Jordan McIntyre said “Baltimore always give us a really strong challenge. They are hard around the contest and really make you earn it. I was extremely pleased with character and fight our guys showed to dig themselves out of what was a pretty big hole in the third quarter and change the game. Anytime you can come to Baltimore and walk away with a win you have to be pleased”
Best: Desai, Burke, Martin, Ormsby, Felsenthal
Goals: Burke 4, Felsenthal 2, Ormsby 2, Walsh, Taylor
Following the main game the Lady Pies took on the Lady Eagles and couldn’t contain the experienced Baltimore-Washington team going down 81 to 6. The Magpies Reserves ensured that the bus ride back to New York would be a good one, tipping the balance back to the Magpies with a 58 to 9 win that saw all players get a good opportunity to work on their skills and fitness.