Surfers finish fifth at WPL Championships

GLENDALE, Colo. - The San Diego Surfers scored 24 unanswered points in 20 minutes Sunday to beat Oregon Rugby Sports Union, 29-22, in the fifth-place match at the 2015 Women's Premier League Championships.

The Surfers failed to register a win in the six-week regular season, but sought revenge against fellow Blue Conference club ORSU after a dominant performance against Atlanta Friday at Infinity Park.

While San Diego looked strong in the early goings, ORSU drew first blood with a try in the 14th minute. The Surfers pushed an ORSU scrum backwards, but the Pacific Northwest side came away with the ball and moved forward through Adrienne Acosta. The tight head prop was able to offload to Beckett Royce in contact, and the number eight played a one-two with Brett Zimmerman to reach the 22. Beckett was able to catch a pass thrown behind her against her own back and stayed out of the tackle to dot down in-goal.

San Juanita Moreno doubled the lead to 10-0 six minutes later after a lineout to ORSU five meters from the try line. The ball was swung to the opposite side of the pitch and the outside center supported Zimmerman to score.

San Diego hooker Chun Chow was shown a yellow card in the 29th minute, but ORSU was unable to take advantage of playing against 14 players. The Surfers enjoyed the majority of possession during the sinning, and scored through Kyla Roth seconds after Chow reentered the match.

Chow made up for the ill-discipline with a try early in the second half, which knotted the score at 10-10. Haylee Maree Barclay gave her side the lead in the 50th minute, and set up Deven Owsiany's try minutes later by blocking an ORSU clearance kick under the posts.

ORSU ended the Surfers' run in the 61st minute to bring the score to 24-15, but a misplaced kick from the defensive half landed in the arms of Skye Howard for San Diego's fifth try. Moreno received a nice offload to score in the 73rd minute but ORSU could not get another attack into the Surfers' half before the final whistle.

Atlanta Harlequins were forced to grow into the seventh-place match against DC Furies - an 18-5 victory - not able to get on the scoreboard until the stroke of halftime. Megan Foster opened the scoring in the 12th minute for the Furies, but it would be the only time the 2014 seventh-place club would sniff the try zone.

Alison Price, scorer of one of Atlanta's four tries Friday in the loss to San Diego, found herself open on the wing on multiple occasions in the first half. A 30th-minute attack was ended by the winger's knock, but a turnover from a penalty against DC allowed Price to gallop down the wing at the end of the half. She was tackled short of the line, but Izraelle Mckinnon followed the play and dove over the try line for a 5-5 halftime score.

Atlanta took the lead it would not relinquish four minutes into the second frame through Price, though referee Marc Nelson needed a video review to confirm the wing did not lose the ball in a tackle over the try line. The confirmed try was not converted for a 10-5 'Quins lead.

Laoise O'Driscoll kicked a penalty goal in the 60th minute to add some breathing space on the scoreboard, which appeared to kick DC into gear. A sustained attack from the Furies resulted in a penalty against Atlanta at the 22, giving DC a chance to set up a lineout close to the try zone. The kick to touch, however, went beyond the in-goal area for a turnover.

A line from long-time Eagle Patty Jervey took Atlanta into the attacking half in the 68th minute before Lauren Hart finished with the try, and the wasted opportunities for DC continued until the final whistle. The Harlequins, who nearly found themselves in the 2014 WPL Final, finish in seventh with the 18-5 win.