Selknam Downs Raptors in 2024 Season Finale

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American Raptors Rugby Player - Three rugby players in action: a player in gray and maroon uniforms holds the ball while being tackled by two players in black and red uniforms during a match.

Trading penalty goals for tries wasn’t good enough for the American Raptors in their Round 14 loss to Selknam on Saturday afternoon.

The Raptors (3-9) did a lot of things right in their 24-19 loss to Selknam (5-1-6). They played their first card-free match of the season and used Francisco Quinn’s foot to grab points when they were available, but Selknam’s ability to solve the defensive puzzle that was the Round 14 match and score tries before the Raptors could was ultimately the difference in the match.

Saturday’s 2024 Super Rugby Americas regular season finale started out like a chess match as both teams tried to feel each other out. The Raptors turned two first-half Selknam penalties into points with Francisco Quinn penalty goals to give the Raptors a 6-0 lead through the first 30 minutes of the match.

Solid defensive efforts by both teams meant that points were hard to come by in the first half. While Selknam only conceded six points in the first half, the Raptors pitched a shutout, with two of their biggest plays coming late in the first half.

Just minutes after taking a 6-0 lead on Quinn’s second penalty goal, Selknam outside center Domingo Saavedra fractured the Raptors’ defense and went in to score the first try of the match. As he was going to ground the ball, Javon Camp-Villalovos came from behind and punched the ball out of his hands, forcing a knock-on and keeping a try off the board.

Selknam threatened again just a few minutes later when it appeared that fullback Rafael Irirarte had scored a try, but he knocked the ball on after contact with Raptors’ prop Facundo Pomponio as he was going in for the grounding.

The Raptors took a 6-0 lead into the halftime break after surviving two scares late in the first. Unfortunately for the Raptors, Selknam made sure the tries counted in the second half.

Selknam wasted no time getting on the board in the second half. Hooker Diego Escobar punched in a try just two minutes into the first half to give the home team their first lead of the match following Nicolás Roger’s conversion.

They added a penalty goal from scrum-half Marcelo Torrealba in the 49th minute to extend the lead to 10-6 before the Raptors responded with another Quinn penalty goal from an infraction that occurred on the ensuing kickoff to cut the lead down to one point. 

Quinn gave the Raptors the lead once again with a penalty goal in the 61st minute before the gates busted open and the tries began to flow. It took all of 65 minutes, but Selknam finally broke through the Raptors’ defense and put a pair of tries on the board in four minutes to take a 24-12 lead with just 11 minutes to play.

The Raptors finally put a try on the board themselves with a pick-and-go score from replacement fly-half John LeFevre in the 76th minute, but it was too little, too late, as the Raptors couldn’t muster the try that would knot things up with only four minutes to play. Selknam would hang on to win 24-19.

While the match did not affect the final table standings, the Raptors did secure a bonus point in the loss to finish with 17 on the season. The Raptors finished with one more point and one more victory than they did in 2023, but finished in the same position – sixth place – as they did a year prior.

Both Selknam and the Raptors were eliminated from playoff contention ahead of Sunday’s Round 14 match. Selknam finished the season in fifth place with 26 table points.

American Raptors

John LeFevre

Francisco Quinn (1/1)

Penalty Goals
Francisco Quinn (4/4)


Diego Escobar, Tomás Dussaillant, Nicolás Roger 

Nicolás Roger (3/3)

Penalty Goals
Marcelo Torrealba (1/1)

The stage is set for a Pampas vs. Dogos final for the @superrugbyamericas crown 👑
English commentary will be provided for the match on Saturday, June 15th at 1:30 PM MT, and it will be broadcast on ESPN+!
📺: (Link in bio!)
#RaptorsRugby | #SRA2024 | #BeSuper
A closer look at how our kickers fared in 2024!
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Best of luck to the four team's competing in tomorrow's @superrugbyamericas semifinals!
🏉: @pampas_uar vs. @cap__rugby at 4 PM MT
🏉: vs. @yacarexv at 6:15 PM MT
English commentary will be available for both matches on ESPN+!
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#RaptorsRugby | #SRA2024 | #BeSuper
Our 2024 try scorers!
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