USA v Japan teams, scorers

The USA Tomahawks defeated a spirited Japan Samurais 54 to 18 in front of 1,200 fans at the Aston Community Center Field to advance to the next stage of the Rugby League World Cup Qualifiers.

In an event which featured Youth Football and Rugby League, the Tomahawks entertained a large hometown crowd with some thrilling tries and big tackles. The Samurais were courageous but in the end size and power were the deciding factor for the USA.

Chilly conditions on game night and torrential rain the evening before threatened to spoil the action on game day but the Tomahawks and Samurais were able to play some exciting Rugby League and develop a whole new base of support in the Delaware Valley region of Pennsylvania.

Although they were defeated, the Samurais were a big hit with the vocal crowd and made many friends with their determined efforts throughout the match that resulted in a couple of long range tries from their speedy outside backs. Man of the match for the USA was Louis Tulio with great support from Marcus Vassilakopouls and Conway Maraki.

The AMNRL, in association with Aston Bandits AA Youth Football, presented an entertaining day with over 2,000 fans enjoying a unique event which featured cheerleaders, t-shirts slingshot into the crowd, and skills challenges. The large crowd was able to purchase and sample some real rugby league treats, including the great Australian Pie, courtesy of sponsors Crikeys Pies based in Toledo, Ohio.

The full day of great sports action featured touchdowns, tackles, pies, and tries with fans of both sports admiring the exciting skill and contact of Rugby League with a view to developing youth Rugby League programs in the future with Aston AA and Chichester AA.

USA Tomhawks 54 (Louis Tulio 3, Marcus Vassilakopoulos 2, Conway Amraki 2, Cory Sheridan, Justin Zadnik, Phil Shipos, Ric Dortone tries, Marcus Vassilakopoulos 5 goals) defeated Japan Samurais 18 (Konishi Amane, Tainaka Noriyuki, Kazaoka Masanori tries, Oriyama Norihiro 3 goals). Halftime - USA 32 Japan 6.

Match played at Aston Community Center Field, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Saturday, October 28 2006. Crowd 2,000+.

USA Tomahawks

1. Eric Hollingsworth
2. Ric Dortone
3. Jeff Preston
4. Cory Sheridan
5. Louis Tulio
6. Conway Maraki
7. Dave Niu
8. Justin Zadnick
9. Marcus Vassilakopolous
10. Ed Woodbridge
11. Chris Craig
12. Kevin Deal
13. Shayne Mains

14. Mike Edwards
15. Fred Backhaus
16. Ryan Coleman
17. Phil Shipos

Japan Tour Squad 2006

Backs:
NAKAI Kazunobu (vice captain)
IJUIN Kazunori
ITAGAKI Masamichi
USHIDA Narihisa
INOUE Mitsutaka
MIYAZAKI Hiroshi
IGUCHI Jin
OSHIMA Yasunori

Forwards:
KONISHI Amane (head coach)
TAINAKA Noriyuki (captain)
KITA Hirofumi
TAKASHINO Mitsuo
KAZOAKA Mansanori
Benedict PENDER
ORIYAMA Norihiro
KONDO Ryo
TAMURA Shunsuke

Coaches: KONISHI Amane, Steve FREEBORN
Physio: UEDA Hiroyuki

Sources: www.amnrl.com, www.geocities.jp/japaneserugbyleague, posters in Front Row Forum International Section

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