Teenager Taylor Paris wasted little time getting on Canada's rugby score sheet.
The 18-year-old winger scored two of his team's eight tries in Canada's 60-22 win over Spain on Saturday in just his second Test appearance for Canada.
"It was a good win for sure," Paris said. "The tries were walk-ins because it was a team effort. I was nervous, but the leaders in the team, like Pat Riordan and Adam Kleeburger, got us ready for the game."
About 8,000 fans at University of Madrid's Complutense University Stadium watched the first-ever Test between the two countries.
Chauncey O'Toole added two tries, while Riordan, Aaron Carpenter, DTH Van der Merwe and Sean Michael-Stephen scored one apiece for the 14th-ranked Canadians, who utilized a strong forward presence with a backline that was eager to run.
James Pritchard booted seven conversions and two penalty goals.
Anthony Pradalie and Pierre Belzunce scored tries for No. 23 Spain, while Santiago Fernandez kicked four penalty goals.
Paris's first try came after Van der Merwe broke into space and offloaded to Pritchard, who drew the last defender before sending Paris streaming down the wing for a short run across the line.
"My first try, I touched the ball down, high-fived a few of the guys and got back into the game," said Paris, who plays for the Ontario Blues.
Canada was bolstered by the return of their professionals, who were still with their European club teams last weekend when the Canadians defeated Belgium 43-12 in Brussels.
Canada got off to a strong start, scoring within the first two minutes, despite a late lineup change when Ander Monro was removed due to injury. Winger Ciaran Hearn was moved to fly half, Justin Mensah-Coker came off the bench to the wing and Nick Blevins was brought onto the bench.
Forward coach Neil Barnes said it was a testament to the composure of the team that they were able to stay focused despite the last-minute changes.
"We had a bit of a glitch just before kickoff with Ander Monro injured," Barnes said. "Credit to the guys, they pulled together and put a lot of points on.
"We're trying to get some accuracy in our plays and sometimes the score is irrelevant, but we're very happy with the amount of points we scored."
The game was a battle between two physical teams. Barnes was impressed with his team's discipline.
"It was a very physical game and everything on the edges of the ruck was a battle," he said. "But when we sent it out wide, the backs made good yards."
Riordan opened the scoring two minutes into the game on a pick-and-go to record his third try in two Tests.
Canada took a 31-12 lead at halftime following tries by Paris, Carpenter and O'Toole. Pritchard nailed all four conversions and one penalty goal in the first half.
Canadian prop Jason Marshall received a yellow card late in the first half for collapsing a maul, but Barnes said the team had prepared for the possibility of shorthanded play.
"The yellow card was certainly disruptive, but we had it covered defensively and we managed to keep them out during that period," he said.
Fernandez scored all 12 of the Lions' first-half points.
Canada made two changes at halftime, giving Jon Phelan his second Test cap as a substitute for Josh Jackson in the second row and Kevin Tkachuk came on for Dan Pletch in the front row.
Canada stretched its advantage just three minutes into the second with a try from Van der Merwe. That was followed by tries from O'Toole, Paris and Stephen. Pritchard connected on three of four conversions in the second half, plus one penalty goal.
The Lions scored two tries before the final whistle.
Barnes and his coaching staff were happy with the result, but would have liked to have kept the Lions from crossing the try line.
"There's definitely excitement about playing any Test match and when you're playing a country for the first time," Barnes said. "We're excited about the win, but there's obviously some disappointment with the late tries, so that's something we need to fix."Report Typo/Error
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