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The Globe and Mail

Ontario Blues win second straight Canadian Rugby Championship

John Lehmann/The Globe and Mail

Tyler Ardron and John Moonlight had two tries each as the Ontario Blues won the Canadian Rugby Championship with a convincing 40-16 win over the Rock on Saturday.

It was the second straight MacTier Cup victory for the Blues.

"We had the intensity we needed to win here," said Blues captain Derek Daypuck. "The Rock are so tough, especially at home, so it felt like we really stepped up under pressure."

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The Blues got on the scoreboard early when wing Dan Moor pounced on a loose ball and took it to the corner for five points, though Daypuck couldn't slot the convert.

Ontario pulled ahead 11-6 after 30 minutes after the Rock's Ciaran Hearn and Daypuck went back and forth with two penalties each.

Outside half Patrick Parfrey posted a try for the Rock and Hearn converted to make the half-time score 13-11 for the hosts.

The Blues went ahead for good with a Daypuck penalty five minutes into the second half, which was followed up by Moonlight's first try of the day off a scrum. Daypuck missed the extras making it 19-13 for Ontario.

A Hearn penalty brought the Rock to within three points at 19-16.

The Blues pulled away after 65 minutes as Ardron recorded his first try, with Daypuck converting to make it 26-16.

Five minutes later Ardron got his second of the day, with another conversion from Daypuck.

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Moonlight sealed the MacTier Cup win when his late try made it 38-16. Daypuck's extras rounded out the score at the Swilers Rugby Complex.

"Great effort from our guys in the second half, especially on defence," said Blues head coach Chris Silverthorn. "We had them under pressure and took points from that pressure. So proud of the guys for a truly committed effort all year."

The game was of interest to national team selectors with Canada taking part in the Americas Rugby Championship next month in Langford, B.C.

Because the Oct. 12-20 ARC dates fall outside the International Rugby Board's international window, Canada will field a domestic side and the CRC has proved to be a stepping stone to the ARC.

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