New England Free Jacks

Free Jacks get back on track with 34-12 win over RFC Los Angeles

The Free Jacks are back in the win column after their first-ever match against Los Angeles.


In perfect conditions at Dignity Health Field in Carson, Calif., the New England Free Jacks faced off against RFC Los Angeles for the first time ever. The Free Jacks came out on top with a convincing 34-12 win.

Coming off a disappointing loss last week at home, the Free Jacks are back on track and remain in first place in the Eastern Conference of Major League Rugby (MLR). 

Thirteen minutes into the game, Seta Baker had a beautiful hand off pass to Andrew Quattrin, who scored a diving try between the goal posts for an automatic seven points. The Free Jacks scored a second try seven minutes later following a line out and a maul which Seta Baker converted into his first ever MLR try. The conversion failed and left the Free Jacks up 12-0.  

Baker was in the middle of the action again later in the half, taking an offload from Mitch Wilson that he tossed to a sprinting Danyon Morgan-Puterangi who set down a try. The visitors raised the score to 17-0. LA put points on the board from a try and conversion by Jack Shaw making the score 17-7 just before the close of the first half.

Coming out of halftime, Reece MacDonald made the play of the match, booting the ball down the LA pitch, chasing after it, and making a diving try. His 50-meter run showed his determination to score and surprised the complacent LA side. The Free Jacks came into the match banged up and MacDonald suffered an injury from his head-first dive and was subbed off following the score. Jayson Potroz made the conversion making the score 24-7. 

LA’s Semi Kunatani scored a try at the 51-minute mark. The conversion was no good, leaving the score at 24-12. 

The Free Jacks defense was outstanding during the second half. The defending MLR champions had little possession of the ball over the final 40 minutes, but they stopped LA from scoring multiple times within five meters. This continued the Free Jacks' strong defensive play of the 2024 season. 

At 72 minutes, Potroz earned a penalty kick, adding three to the board and increasing the lead to 27-12. Just before the end of the match, Morgan-Puterangi scored another brace by chasing down a Potroz kick. Potroz made the conversion, setting the final score at Free Jacks 34, Los Angeles 12.  

Potroz was awarded man of the match.  

“We had a real good week of preparation. We weren't pretty today, but we'll take five points, get out of here and look forward to Chicago next week,” said Potroz. 

Next Sunday, the Free Jacks (6-2-0, 29 points) host a battle of the top two teams in the East with the Chicago Hounds (4-3-1, 23 points) visiting Veterans Memorial Stadium in Quincy.   

Before the match on Sunday, Nate Ebner, a former New England Patriots safety and US Olympic Rugby player will host a tackling clinic for youth and high school football players. For more information, visit the Free Jacks' website.

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