King Of The North: Week 13
The playoff races are heating up and many Canadian MLR players are right in the middle of it! Josh Larsen is leading his Free Jacks on a massive surge up the standings as they remain undefeated at home. Quinn Ngawati’s Rugby United New York ended Conor Key’s and Rugby ATL’s winning streak as those two clubs battled for the top spot in the East.
Fraser Hurst came on the pitch late and helped lead the Utah Warriors to an epic comeback victory over Michael Smith’s San Diego Legion. The matches will only get more intense as the season goes on.
The LA Giltinis battled the Houston SaberCats in a game that is quite easy to analyze. The Giltinis are good, the SaberCats are bad, and the score line reflects that. Corey Thomas had a brilliant outing as he made tackle after tackle to completely shut down the SaberCat attack. Unfortunately, he was forced to leave the game with an injury in the 51st minute.
While Thomas was a driving force for the Giltinis defense, the offense once again ran through DTH van der Merwe. He showed up to the Coliseum rocking a new pink haircut, and made sure the glorious flow would be prominently featured on all the Rugby Network’s highlight reels.
Van der Merwe was buzzing early. He had an offload that looked to put Ryan James away, but the try was called back for a forward pass. Van der Merwe would take matters into his own hands soon after. On the first phase following a scrum, Van der Merwe ran a beautiful line and received a great pass from Harrison Goddard before waltzing in for the try.
Later on, another slick pass from Van der Merwe would send Glen Bryce off to the races as the Giltinis obliterated Houston 52-5, setting a new league record for margin of victory.
Van der Merwe’s try brings him to 10 on the year, which is now tied for 1st in MLR. He is tied with Giltinis’ teammate Angus Cottrell with Goddard sitting in 4th with 8. For having another highlight reel day, that brings him to the top of the league in try scoring (as well as playing some solid defense in this match), DTH van der Merwe earns his second King of the North crown. Although, I hope he doesn’t use the crown to cover up the pink hair!
The honourable mention for this week goes out to Mitch Richardson! Despite the Arrows falling to Austin, Richardson delivered one of the cooler Canadian moments this week as he picked up his first career MLR try. As always, you can see all the tries scored by a Canadian this week in the video below!
Kings of the North 2021:
Week 1- DTH van der Merwe (LA)
Week 2- Fraser Hurst (UTAH)
Week 3- Lucas Rumball (TOR)
Week 4- Corey Thomas (LA)
Week 5- Ross Braude (TOR)
Week 6- Ben LeSage (TOR)
Week 7- Lachlan Kratz (NOLA)
Week 8- Josh Larsen (NEFJ)
Week 9- Michael Smith (SDL)
Week 10- Matt Heaton (RATL)
Week 11- Matt Heaton (RATL)
Week 12- Rumball (TOR) & Smith (SD)
Week 13 - DTH van der Merwe (LA)