The New York Magpies have defeated the Orange County Bombers 2.4.16 to 2.1.13 to win their second National Title at the 2014 USAFL National Championships in front of a huge crowd at Daree Fields in Dublin, OH. Over the weekend tournament, the Magpies won all 3 of their qualifying games against Dallas, Golden Gate and Calgary as follows:
New York Magpies 4.7.31 def Dallas Magpies 1.4.10
New York Magpies 9.7.61 def Golden Gate Roos 0.1.1
New York Magpies 4.5.29 def Calgary Kangaroos 2.5.17
A hard fought Grand Final
The Grand Final was an extremely hard fought match, with both teams fielding an impressive mix of American and Australian talent. Orange County won the toss and chose to kick with the aid of a strong breeze. However, it was New York that jumped out of the blocks and got off to a fast start. From the opening bounce, New York got the clearance, moved the ball up to center half forward and then kicked a great goal against the wind, all in the first play of the game.
New York maintained their dominance in general play against the wind, winning the contested possession count, however they could not capitalize on the scoreboard. Orange County then worked their way into the game through multiple forward bursts, with long kicking to their highly rated key forwards. The Magpies backline was up to the challenge though and stood up under intense pressure, showing courage and discipline under fire. OC did manage to kick two goals from their repeated entries inside forward 50 and took a four point lead into half time.
Intensity lifts in second half
At the half time break, the Magpies camp was confident of victory, believing they could over run OC with the wind in the second half, just as they had done to Calgary in the previous game. The intensity lifted to a new level in the second half as each player gave everything they had. The running game that New York had been able to use in the previous matches had been locked down, meaning the rest of the match was to be a tightly contested game full of stoppages, contested marks and courageous acts.
Both teams applied strong defensive pressure and tackling and it was a real arm wrestle. The Magpies controlled the play, however OC had dropped men behind the ball to clog up the Magpies forward line and New York could not get any clean shots towards their forwards or at goal. The majority of the second half was played in the Magpies forward half of the ground as the breeze was playing a major factor, along with the Magpies dominance of the ruck. The Magpies made a couple of moves to switch things up which resulted in a goal to give them the lead with ten minutes remaining in the match.
A final surge
With a few minutes left on the clock, Orange Country managed to break the trend of play and rebound the ball out of defense to find a loose many in their forward 50. However, the shot on goal missed and New York moved the ball down to the field from the resulting kick-in and controlled the tempo of the game. The Magpies were able to keep the ball locked in their forward line until the siren sounded and they were the champions. The last few minutes seemed like an eternity and when the siren finally sounded the Magpies players and coaching staff were elated, but also exhausted from the toughest game of the season.
The 2014 National Title is the Magpies first since their drought-breaking win in 2010 and the second in the club’s history.
In addition to winning the Men’s Division 1 National Championship, The New York Lady Pies also played represented the club with pride, going 1-2 in the womenâ€™s tournament.
Watch the replay!
A full replay of the match is available via the USAFL’s YouTube site.
Check out the Photos & Match Reports!
Visit our Facebook page for a look at some of the photos from the weekend.
Stay tuned for full match reports of the weekend on www.nyfooty.com.
Thank you to our sponsors!
We would like to thank all players, sponsors, club staff and every single person who contributed, both on and off the field, to making this such a successful year. It was a terrific team effort and continues the clubs mantra of team above self.