SAN DIEGO (CBS4) — The Glendale Raptors stomped through the inaugural Major League Rugby regular season nearly undefeated this year, losing a meaningless game at the very end.

But the championship.

The trophy.

The proverbial “hardware” that is the reward at the end of a successful campaign…

It was not to be.

The Seattle Seawolves – the other squad that pursued Glendale in a league dominated by the two teams – captured the league’s first title Saturday in San Diego, beating the Raptors 23-19.

Mid-way through the second half, Glendale center Bryce Campbell took a pass from flyhalf Mike Kruse and dotted down. With the successful two-point conversion by William Magie, the Raptors led 19-8.

It was all Seattle from there.

rugby 3 Raptors Fall To Seawolves, 23 19, In Rugby Championship

Glendale Raptors center Chad London looks for maneuvering room Saturday in the Major League Rugby Championship against the Seattle Seawolves in San Diego. (credit: Justin Purdy/glendaleraptors.com)

The Seawolves scored within seconds, cutting the Glendale advantage to 19-13.

They took a 20-19 lead with a huge scoring run in the 61st minute, and kicked for another three points with 17 minutes left in the match.

Hampered by ball-handling miscues, penalties, and Seattle’s “Sea Wall” defense, the Raptors were unable to respond. The Seawolves maintained possession in the closing moments and walked off the pitch victorious.

rugby 1 Raptors Fall To Seawolves, 23 19, In Rugby Championship

John Quill carries for the Glendale Raptors Saturday in the team’s 23-19 loss to Seattle in the Major League Rugby title match. (credit: Justin Purdy/glendaleraptors.com)

Gledale hooker Zach Fenoglio scored a try in the first half for Glendale, and back row member John Quill added another early in the second.

Seattle led at the half, 8-7.

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