Match Report: Super 8s Toronto Wolfpack vs Barrow Raiders

MITCHELL TIERNEY, Lamport Stadium, September 9, 2017

The Toronto Wolfpack have clinched the League One title with a 26-2 victory over the Barrow Raiders in their inaugural season. The win also means promotion to the Kingstone Press Championship, the second division in English rugby league.

At the full-time hooter the Wolfpack were given a standing ovation from the 7,972 supporters at Lamport Stadium ahead of the trophy presentation at centre field.

After a tightly contested first half, the Wolfpack opened the floodgates in a nine-minute stretch starting in the 54th minute when Blake Wallace scored a pair of tries, and set up another.

Both sides struggled to finish sets early in the match, but it was the Wolfpack who eventually opened the scoring on 15 minutes. After a winding run from Craig Hall put the home side in good position in the Barrow half, Quentin Laulu-Togaga’e finishing off the move by touching down in the corner. Hall converted to give the Wolfpack a 6-0 leaded.

The Wolfpack added to their lead on 31 minutes after a ball-stripping penalty call following a tackle by James Duerden and Dan Toal. Hall kicked the penalty to make the score 8-0. He nearly extended the lead moments later but fumbled a grubber kick from Fuifui Moimoi.

The score remained 8-0 at the half, with the Raiders throwing everything they could at the Wolfpack but finding themselves unable to make it over the try-line.

Early on in the second half a 40-20 kick from James Dallimore instantly put the Raiders on the front foot. However, they were held up before Laulu-Togaga’e could recover the ball for the Wolfpack, momentarily relieving the pressure from Barrow.

On 49 minutes Lewis Charnock got Barrow on the board when he kicked a penalty from 40 yards to bring the score to 8-2.

The Wolfpack, however, responded on 54 minutes when Gary Wheeler sent a looping pass across to Blake Wallace who eluded a couple of tacklers before touching down under the posts. It was his 15th try of the season and brought the score to 14-2.

Wallace was instrumental again in putting the Wolfpack over three minutes later, when his pass picked out Richard Whiting. It was the Toronto veteran’s 11th try of the season.

The match officially turned into the ‘Blake Wallace show’ moments later when the Toronto half-back found his way through the Barrow line for his second try in nine minutes. Hall’s conversion gave the Wolfpack a 26-2 lead.

Celebration ensued after the match as the Wolfpack players paraded the trophy around the field. The team still has one match remaining, next Saturday when Doncaster visit.

GAME BREAKER: Three tries in nine minutes, starting in the 54th minute, sealed victory for the Wolfpack.

GAMESTAR: Blake Wallace’s brace came as part of one of his best performances of the season.

MATCH FACTS

TORONTO WOLFPACK

1 Quentin Laulu-Togaga’e
2 Johnny Pownall
3 Greg Worthington
4 Craig Hall (C)
5 Liam Kay
6 Blake Wallace
7 Rhys Jacks
29 Jake Emmitt
9 Bob Beswick
8 Fuifui Moimoi
11 Andrew Dixon
17 Richard Whiting
13 Jack Bussey

Subs (all used)
21 Adam Sidlow
24 Sean Penkywicz
14 Gary Wheeler
10 Dan Fleming

Tries: Laulu-Tongaga’e 15’ Wallace 54’ 62’ Whiting 57’
Goals: Hall (5/5)

BARROW RAIDERS

24 Luke Creswell
45 Tom Loxam
4 Max Wiper
12 Jarred Stack
33 Eze Harper
6 James Dallimore
7 Lewis Charnock
8 Joe Bullock
15 Karl Ashall
10 Oliver Wilkes (C)
18 Danny Morrow
22 Brad Crellin
13 Martin Aspinwall

Subs (all used)
9 Nathan Mossop
11 Dan Toal
21 James Duerden
17 Tom Walker

Tries:
Goals: Charnock (1/1)

Rugby Leaguer & League Express Men of the Match

Toronto Wolfpack: Blake Wallace
Whitehaven: Luke Creswell

Penalty count: 8-10
Half-time: 8-0
Referee: John McMullen
Attendance: 7,972

SCORING SEQUENCE: 6-0, 8-0, 8-2, 14-2, 20-2, 26-2