DUBLIN (AP) — Ireland showed off its deep talent pool when its second-stringers absorbed a strong United States start then smashed the Eagles 57-14 at Lansdowne Road on Saturday.
Ireland made 14 changes after beating New Zealand last weekend, and found itself in a match when the U.S. leveled at 14-14 a quarter in with a penalty try from a rolling maul.
But the effort to reach that point took a toll on the Eagles, and their unprecedented nine-test winning streak ended with their first loss of the year.
Ireland wore them down by pounding their line with their big men, forcing the U.S. to make tackle after tackle. Cracks began to appear on the outside of the tiring Eagles defense.
The start of the second half was delayed for lengthy treatment to U.S. hooker Joe Tautefe'e for a head knock, but then the Irish, wearing uncommon blue, proved relentless as they exploded the scoreline from 24-14 at halftime by scoring five successive tries.
Winger Andrew Conway finished with three, and the others went to No. 8 Jack Conan, lock Tadhg Beirne, center Stuart McCloskey, and replacement forwards Quinn Roux and John Ryan. Joey Carbery made eight of nine goalkicks.
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