THREE NEW C3s
The Promotion Committee of the NCRRS is happy to announce that the flock has a trio of newly-minted C3 referees: Rich Boyer, Craig Lusiani and Scott McConnell.
Congratulations, gentlemen. Onward and upward!
FORTY GAMES FOR TWENTY-NINE REFEREES
That’s the situation at present for February 21. We need more refs!
If you have not sent in your February availability, please do so – that’s half a dozen of our members. If you previously indicated that you could not run on the 21st, please have another look at the calendar.
Sent in by Phil Akroyd:
Rugby team loses record scoreline
Midlands club Alcester thought they had earned a place in rugby union's record books when they recorded a 194-3 win over Coventry Saracens last weekend. But the scoreline - a record winning margin for an English league game - has been wiped from the records after a ruling from local officials. Coventry Saracens were handicapped by having only eight players, and formed scrums with just three men. However, rules insist scrums have a minimum of five players per side.
Despite the 191-point margin of victory, Alcester would have had some way to go to beat the world record for a game of union. This stands at 350-0 and came in 1984 when tries were worth only four points rather than five, with French club Lavardac beating their third division opponents Vergt 350-0 with 66 tries. To be fair to Vergt, the match was actually a very Gallic form of protest with the players making no effort to defend in order to register their unhappiness at the suspension of several players. The result of the Midlands Six West (SE) match will still stand with Alcester keeping the two league points following the ruling by the Midlands League Organising Committee (MLOC).
"We have to say well done to Coventry Saracens for turning up and giving it a go," said MLOC chairman Paul Kaminski. "Had they put five players into the scrums instead of three they would have satisfied the laws of the game.
"But they require a minimum of five forwards in scrums at all times and so we have decided to declare the score null and void and award the two points to Alcester.
"We believe this is the fairest solution for all clubs in this league."
MARITIME ACADEMY 38 – Sierra College 19 Referee: Rich Boyer
Referee Coach: David Williamson
Sacramento Lions 7 – OLYMPIC CLUB 20 Referee: Paul Bretz
Assistant Referee: Chris Tucker
Sac Lions hosted O club on a rain-drenched pitch. Chris Tucker provided excellent support as the assistant referee. Despite the field conditions the game was played in good spirits and all seemed to have a good time. O club came out of the gates on fire and scored 3 tries in the first half. Sac's only score came from a counter attack that resulted from a poorly completed clearing kick that left one defender trying to tackle 6 Sac Lions. At half time the score was 17-7. Only one additional penalty kick occurred in the second half as both teams struggled to maintain possession in the wet conditions. O Club's strong set piece resulted in 4 tight-heads and at least half a dozen stolen balls at the line-out.
Seconds: Sacramento Lions – Olympic Club
We’re not sure if this was played.
Hayward 7 – SAN MATEO 11 Referee: Tony Redmond
Arrangements for this game didn't start well because I turned up at the wrong high school in Hayward. A couple of phone calls sorted out that problem and I eventually arrived at the right place about 30 minutes before the scheduled 1PM start. Mark this confusion down to a newcomer still finding his way around the rugby locations in the Bay Area.
Things didn't go any better after reaching the right location. A high school game was being played on a muddy pitch that was bereft of line markings. After that game finished, an examination of the pitch revealed that it could not host any serious level of rugby with the markings that it had - plus there were no flags and the crowd was firmly camped on the touch line. Negotiations then ensued to get the pitch remarked, to find flags, and to put ropes up as per regulations. Vivienne from the rugby union did a great job to work with the Hayward club to doing the right thing but all came to a grinding halt when the fact emerged that the permit for the ground specifically excluded any game played when conditions were wet and muddy, which they absolutely were.
Further negotiations brought us to the point where the game was moved to a nearby football pitch. This had no markings, flags, etc. but it did have the benefit of stands and fences. The Hayward club begin to mark out the ground to a point where we had basic markings (dead ball, goal, 22, half) but little else. No flags were to be found and the football posts were pressed into service. All in all, not a great way to host a game between two division 1 clubs and certainly well outside the boundaries of the arrangements envisaged by regulations.
In any case, we eventually kicked off at 2:05PM and San Mateo quickly took advantage of some basic errors by Hayward to first kick a penalty and then score an unconverted try from a 5m line-out. Play was very typical of an early season game with much honest endeavor coming to grief in a succession of knock-ons and forward passes. Hayward eventually got into the game by scoring a converted try early in the second half and San Mateo responded with another penalty to close out the scoring and leave the final result at 7-11. The pace slowed in the last 20 minutes as players tired and substitutes came on.
Seconds: HAYWARD 5 – San Mateo 0 Referee: Mike King
This match was a very abbreviated due to a late start for the 1st side contest and the need to free the pitch for another match. The intensity level was incredibly high and the play incredibly spirited. Well played!
Baracus 0 – EAST PALO ALTO 51 Referee: Chris Labozzetta
As the score indicates, EPA flat out crushed Baracus on this opening weekend for both sides. EPA played a very disciplined and aggressive game, which was very impressive to witness, especially this early in the season. Baracus simply was outmatched on the day. The defining moment was with 2 minutes to go in the first half, Baracus had an offensive scrum on EPA’s 30 meter line. EPA smashed the scrum, won the ball, and ran virtually untouched 70 meters for a try to end the half. I would have to think EPA are going to be very tough to beat in Div 2 this year.
Seconds: Baracus 0 – EPA 36 Ref: Labozzetta
Pretty much a carbon copy of the first game, at a slightly slower pace.
FRESNO 91 – Arroyo Grande 0 Referee: Phil Ulibarri
Fresno scored 15 unanswered tries with eight conversions in a convincing demonstration before about 100 home-town fans. Final 91 – 0.
Seconds: FRESNO 26 – Arroyo Grande 0 Ref: Ulibarri
Arroyo Grande reluctantly/gallantly agreed to an abbreviated second 20-minute refrain with uncontested scrums which ended 26 – nil.
Thanks to Isaac and Bo my touch judges on the day.
Seahawks 19 – SANTA ROSA 26 Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
Assistant Referees: Rich Anderson, Mike King
Referee Coach: David Williamson
Location: Sunset HS, Hayward
I was originally scheduled to referee the 2nd XV match between Hayward and San Mateo, but due to some somewhat comical problems finding a marked and available field in Hayward, the 2nd XV match was originally called off. Rich Anderson was scheduled to referee the San Jose vs Santa Rosa match (which itself had been hastily re-scheduled due to field unavailability), but he graciously invited me to referee his match. The Hayward 2nd XV match ended up being played at the last minute for 20 minutes (refereed by Mike King), which meant that the San Jose vs Santa Rosa match had to wait until 4:15 pm to kickoff. Since evening visibility was sure to be an issue, the captains agreed before the match to play at least one half and whatever else was possible, at which point the final score would be accepted as an official league result. After the uncertainty of finding a field to play on, players and officials were glad to get going under cold, dark, damp conditions. I, for one, was excited to have a full crew of NCRRS support: Rich Anderson and Mike King running touch, David Williamson in the stands (with audio), and Tony Redmond (who refereed the Hayward vs San Mateo 1st XV match) as an observer.
The match ended up being quite entertaining and well-matched: the contest for possession was fierce and both teams looked to spin the ball wide where they often found swarming support. San Jose scored first to lead 0-7, but Santa Rosa scored two tries to lead 12-7 at half. San Jose showed superior physicality in the forwards, but Santa Rosa looked more potent in the backs. With darkness looming, San Jose scored twice and seemed to have the match in the bag at 12-19, but they attempted an adventurous skip pass that was intercepted and resulted in a Santa Rosa try which tied the match 19-19 at the 58th minute. I informed the players that I would play 2 more minutes, after which Santa Rosa proceeded to score one last try that sealed the match, 26-19, 4 tries to 3. It was a shame to play only 60 minutes of rugby, but I had to end the match due to poor light. The return match will be good!
Much thanks to Rich and Mike for their help as assistant referees, David for his coaching, and Tony for his advice.
Seconds: Seahawks – Santa Rosa Referee: NOT PLAYED
DIABLO GAELS 34 – SF/Golden Gate 15 Referee: Joe Leisek
Diablo Valley College, Pleasant Hill
The season-opener for both clubs, and a very spirited, competitive match. The first 15 minutes seemed to be all SFGG, as they seemed much better organized and far better disciplined. In fact, at that point I was convinced it was going to be a long afternoon for the Gaels. But the hosts soon started to play with a much better focus and resolve; they concentrated better and I could feel the momentum shift. Although the visitors scored first, the Gaels rebounded with several tries in the first half, including a beauty from a lineout and some efficient passing that sent their outside center scampering about 45 meters for a try. SFGG mounted a comeback in the second half, but the Gaels pulled away for the win. Both teams featured several young players in their starting XVs (the average age of the entire Diablo club roster is 24). Good to speak with coaches Harry Batten and Mike Caravelli after the match. (It was my third Batten-related assignment of the young season, having twice refereed his son Kyle with St. Mary's College.) A quality rugby day in a great setting, with a precisely-lined field and fine hospitality.
Seconds: Diablo Gaels 24 – SFGG 34 Referee: Dave Heath
Referee Coach: Joe Leisek
This was a good competitive game. In the first half SFGG had the lion's share of possession and territory, but still turned around 17-10 down thanks to two opportunistic tries by the Diablo right and left wings and a well worked goal to two unconverted tries.
Diablo scored another good goal early in the second half to stretch their lead, but then it became a battle for them as SFGG reasserted their possession game and started to pull the game back. Strong forward drives, good off-loading in the tackle and some good vision to put players into space saw SFGG score four unanswered tries (two converted) to finish 34-24 ahead.
Thoroughly enjoyed this game, and all credit to both sets of players for their commitment and skill. Thanks also to Joe for staying on after his game to provide some feedback.
Mission – Humboldt RAIN OUT
Vacaville 21 – BERKELEY 27 Referee: Sam Reagle
I brought HiTops in case the rain earlier this week turned this game into a mudfest, but such was not the case. The pitch was damp, but in good shape with the weather behaving wonderfully with cloudy skies and no rain all day.
Berkeley struck early with an unconverted try just 3 minutes into the game and another unconverted try midway thru the first half. Both teams did a good job of poaching the ball at tackles where the support was late in arriving. The first half was very fluid, but turnovers and knock-ons killed many attacks. Vacaville scored a converted try 35 minutes in for a halftime score of 10-7.
Like the first half, Berkeley controlled the early goings of the second half with unconverted tries at the 7 and 23 minute marks and a converted try at the 30 minute mark to go up 27-7. Berkeley was controlling the scrums and appeared to be cruising even before too many Not-Releasing penalties on Vacaville sent a man to the bin for the duration. However, the game got interesting when the remaining 14 Vacaville players scored their second converted try with a couple of minutes remaining to draw within 6 of winning this game. It was not to be, but they did get a bonus point.
Interesting side-bar: One of the early Berkeley conversions looked to be good, but was called wide by their touch judge. I chose not to overrule since it was THEIR touch judge. It seemed insignificant at the time, but in the end, affected the bonus point.
Seconds: VACAVILLE 17 – Berkeley 12 Ref: Reagle
Good clean game of mostly the A-side players playing again with a handful of newbies.
The Good Heffer hosted the party. Nice place, stop in if you are in Vacaville.
FOG 27 – Stanislaus 5 Referee: Roberto Santiago
Referee Coach: Dixon Smith
Overcast, chilly, and perfect for rugby as the rain held off on Treasure Island on Saturday. Both teams came out playing well defensively but Fog made it 5-0 with a nifty chip kick from the 12 to the 14 at the 9:47 mark. Fog scored again in the first half for a 10-0 lead. After the Fog converted a penalty Stanislaus closed the gap with try at 49:50 to make it 13-5. After that it was all SF as the home side tacked on two more converted tries, including one while a man down for a dangerous tackle, for a 27-5 final. The difference in the game once again was cohesion in the back line as the Fog's line seemed just a little more in sync taking advantage of a fine short kicking game to make ground and put a couple over the line.
CHICO 129 – Mendocino 0 Referee: Phil Akroyd
Location: Chico Middle School
Weather: Cool, cloudy and breezy (perfect!)
The outcome of this game was on the cards for many days leading up to the match. The Mendocino coach (Liam) informed me that the team was undergoing a rebuilding phase; they had lost their training facilities and several players. They would also be traveling to Chico short. Chico, on the other hand, had been having a strong pre-season and has a large squad, with big, talented and experienced players.
The first try was scored by Chico after 24 seconds. That was the pattern of the game for the remaining 79 minutes and 36 seconds.
It was 64 – 0 at half time and the only disruption to the try-fest was a gaping head wound to the Mendocino right winger with 30 minutes to go as a result of a freak tackle accident. The game finished with ten tries in the first half, eleven in the second, a total of 7 penalties awarded in the game, one free-kick and two teams of players who assured me that they all enjoyed the game and got something out of it.
Aptos – Petaluma CANCELED – TO BE RESCHEDULED
VALLEJO 40 – Shasta 8 Referee: Ray Schwartz
Referee Coach: Mike Malone
Qualified Touch Judge: Vaea Anitoni
After driving to Shasta the weekend before and yet having no game, both Shasta and I hoped for a full 80-minutes in Vallejo. Before this match, the Highlanders collectively commented on how they had never seen 10 rugby players drive so far and yet not bother to at least scrimmage, as Aptos had the week before. Hard to say, but the 25 Highlanders ready to play last week at home had now dwindled to 17 in Vallejo. I'm sure if they had played a decent match the week before, their numbers would have been higher...
Vallejo has numbers. And a field! In a stadium, with lights, and flagpole, rest rooms, man, this is legit! John Kelly never played rugby, but founded the team last year, and is blessed to have coaches Ben Whisky and Vaea Anitoni to work together on helping to change hearts and minds among the troubled youth of Vallejo. A great group with a great spirit. They lacked some discipline, some skill and some fitness...however, some of their players are fit and skillful. It made for a compelling match.
Mike Malone got me mic'ed up, and the game would be broadcast on local cable and the internet, with my voice over! Mike reported afterwards I had done a very good job of communicating, and during at least one long stretch, I did a lot of heavy breathing too!
Shasta came out blazing and scored the first points through a penalty. Vallejo would be persistently infringing at the tackle/ruck, just a fraction below earning a yellow card for repeat team infringements on the day. They collectively seemed to commit every penalty at least twice! I talked them out of what I could, and let advantage go as much as possible.
Vallejo roared back with a converted try. Play moved fast from try line to try line, but with no score. My left hamstring clamped up about 30 minutes in, ouch! Shasta missed two more attempts at goal before finally scoring an unconverted try, and take an 8-7 lead into halftime.
Shasta remained game, but the story of the second half was Vallejo raising theirs. There were some nice combinations between their centers and fullback leading to long runs. Their scrums, though a man short, dominated. Ben was really concerned about making certain to pick up the bonus point, and sure enough his 55-year old self scored the third of 6 tries in the half! The game ended with a charged down kick (in general play) caroming off the face of a Vallejo player, ricocheting forward to a teammate, who danced in for the score.
I appreciate Mike Malone's feedback and enthusiasm after the match. Even though I project confidence, in truth I am a steaming mass of self-doubt...like so many of us. Mike pointed out my strengths, confirmed I had more than I thought (!), and provided good direction toward how I might best improve my ref skills.
Had a great chat with John Kelly afterwards, as I helped him take down his Stars and Stripes. Vallejo will host the NCRFU DIII championship at their home pitch, a facility/location filled with great potential, and yet surrounded by a largely abandoned former naval base. The aftermatch function was at John's facility nearby, over the bridge in town, kind of a halfway house/youth center. The food was great, the spirits infectious! Great to be a part of NorCal rugby, and witness it growing in positive directions!
CALIFORNIA 109 – Nevada 3 Referee: James Hinkin
Assistant Referees: Eric Rauscher, Richard McGrath (Sydney)
Assessor: Bryan Porter
Coaching and Advice: Pete Smith
While the clouds were threatening the weather held off in Berkeley for the Cal v Nevada match. This was my first visit to Witter Rugby Field as an official (I have been there as a player and a fan) and the level of professionalism was apparent throughout the day. After the teams and the referees were introduced we paused for the national anthem and the game was started. Nevada started strong with some early pressure but Cal held firm and relieved it. A penalty to Cal at midfield led to a quick tap and recycling and Cal was across for a try within 5 minutes. Nevada kept the pressure on after the restart and were rewarded with a couple of scrums near the Cal line and eventually managed a drop goal. After that it was all Cal. Nevada tackled hard but couldn't get ahold of the ball and were eventually worn down as the tries came more frequently as time went on. Cal produced a workmanlike and disciplined performance with flashes of brilliance. Half time score: 46-3. Final score: 109-3.
Seconds: CALIFORNIA 125 – Nevada 0 Referee: Smith, Pete
Cal’s B side were never tested, but did have to play all 80 minutes as the UNR team were determined to finish the match regardless of the results. Considering several players, including most of the front row, had to play again in the B side match, everyone was impressed if not a little surprised that a full 80 minutes were completed. With the tally already over the century mark and about 15 minutes left to play, UNR were offered some relief, they responded “What, they don’t want to play a full game?”- I responded, “No, I am sure they are okay for all 80”- “Good, so are we!”. My hat’s off the UNR for playing the game properly. Oh, I only had 5 penalties in this one, two against Cal.
Daniel Barrett, formerly of SFGG U19 and USA U19, was his usual standout self scoring almost at will with at least 5 tries, maybe more I lost track. Having refereed Todd Clever at roughly the same stage in his career, with a few years left in high school, Daniel is the first player to remind me of Todd. If he gets serious and as fit as he needs to be to play at the highest levels, no doubt the sky is the limit for him. It is tough to push yourself when the game comes so easily at this level, but hopefully as he climbs the ladder of success, he will see the amount of work and dedication it will take to maximize his potential.
UC Davis 14 – CHICO STATE 27 Referee: Joe Androvich
Seconds: UC Davis 31 – CHICO STATE 33 Referee: Scott McConnell
The rain stayed away therefore the track was decent for some running rugby, Chico bolted out of the gate and ran in 4 converted tries to UC Davis 10 points coming by way of 1 converted try and a penalty kick. Davis got a good second wind after the half and ran in 3 unanswered converted tries to just take the lead. Chico realizing this went into top gear and ran in a try to take the lead back with only five minutes left. They held onto the ball and ran out time to win 33-31.
SACRAMENTO STATE 32 – Stanford 24 Referee: Jim Crenshaw
Assistant Referees: Matt Eason, Craig Lusiani/Sean Lyons
Thanks to Matt Eason and Craig Lusiani/Sean Lyons for running touch and Kat Todd for her input. We had a hotly contested match Saturday, with Sac State starting off fast with 2 unconverted trys in the first 20 minutes to take a 10 - 0 lead, only to have Stanford storm back with 2 trys and one conversion to make it 12 - 10 at halftime.
Sac State regained the lead with a penalty kick. Stanford scored a converted try to go up 19 - 13 at about the 20 minute mark, but Sac State scored a converted try to regain a one point advantage. With about 8 minutes remaining Sac State scored a try in the corner. The kick was short so Sac State increased their margin to 6. With only a couple of minutes left, Stanford scored under the posts to shrink Sac State’s lead to 1. The Stanford conversion was partially blocked, and couldn't quite get over the crossbar. Play resumed, but the momentum had shifted, with Sac State scoring a converted try with no time left. Great match!!
Final score Sac State 32 Stanford 24
Seconds: SAC STATE 32 – Stanford 10 Referee: Craig Lusiani
Referee Coach: Kat Todd-Schwartz
Threatening skies but no rain. Wind was a factor.
The match had good flow but, despite tenacity shown by Stanford's pack, the Hornet forwards controlled much of the set play as a result of the size advantage they enjoyed. Sac St. also had speed advantage in their back line which was telling in the final score with two long breaks for tries in the second half.
San Jose State – Santa Clara RAINED OUT
UC Santa Cruz 14 – SANTA ROSA JC 27 Referee: Rob Hendrickson
Assistant Referee: Brian Schnack
The Slugs' pitch was in great shape, and we had only a slight drizzle in the second half of this fast and intense game. Santa Rosa scored 3 first half tries and managed to hold off several UC Santa Cruz possessions which ended in knock-ons in the 5 meter area before Santa Cruz finally punched one in. The second half saw a penalty try awarded against Santa Rosa for impeding Santa Cruz's #10 from downing his well placed kick for a try, followed by two late break away tries by Santa Rosa to put the game away. Notwithstanding the hard fought nature of the game, good sportsmanship prevailed by both teams which made my job much easier and more fun). What a great outing.
Humboldt St – Diablo U23 CANCELED
USF – SFSU Referee:
UC DAVIS women 27 – Nevada 5 Referee: Jackie Finck
TJ: Donald Walsh
Driving down the hill to the valley that morning, I passed through snow and rain to get to Davis. It looked to be a dreary, overcast day. But as soon as I passed through Sacramento and into Davis, the clouds had cleared, the sun was shining, the pitch was soft, the air was crisp; ingredients for a fantastic rugby recipe.
Both teams had spirited energy, but Reno compromised discipline at the offside lines -entering the gate from the side, loitering along rucks- which caused a few pricey penalties. It wasn't until the second half when Reno began to heed my voice to prevent material offences, in which case they scored a try. Both captains demonstrated excellent team management on the field. Continuity at the rucks and mauls for both teams seems to be a slow down; I got mixed management reviews from both coaches. A big thanks to the BMOC -Donald Walsh- for helping me out as an official TJ.
STANFORD women 126 – Humboldt State 0 Referee: George O’Neil
Video Coach: Bruce Carter
From #1 to #15, the Stanford players run upfield, always with support. Tackle though HSU would, there was always someone there to take an offload until one of the burners could show her heels.
Seconds: STANFORD 51 – California 12 Referee: Bruce Carter
Cal had a lot of brand-new players.
Something occurred to me during this match, that players new to rugby from other sports, or new to team sports altogether, are not used to match officials addressing them by number during play. A lot of blank looks led me to this conclusion.
Perhaps a word to those of you coaching new ruggers: let them know that the Pelicanrefs will speak to them, by number, while the ball is in play, to help them stay on the bright side of the Law.
The other conclusion arising from this match is that Stanford’s selectors will have some decisions to make as the season rolls on – these women are good!
UC SANTA CRUZ women 26 – Chico State 5 Referee: Schnack
UCSC Women beat Chico State Women at UCSC, 26-5, on Saturday January 24th.
This was a fun match backed by seasonably appropriate cold with light rain, a few whistles, four first-half Slug tries, a few close (but not close enough) deep excursions by Chico, and finally an excellent second-half five-phase (with advantage) try by Chico.
Great follow-up and support, along with tenacious running gave the Slugs a 26-0 lead at half. Chico's game was sidetracked with infringements at the tackle and rucks, not to mention committing too many folks (intentionally or not) into the rucks.
The second half was a cleaner version of the first, with both sides taking to each other. Chico put together some good possessions, and got some reward that Saturday with a fun five+ phase combo of runtackleruckruntackleruckadvantagespinoutruntacklepoppasstackleruckrun...etc. Experiencing a series like that makes me happy to be breathing.
A quick 2nd sides match followed (thanks to both Santa Rose JC and UCSC Mens for giving them twenty). The Slugs won this, for what it's worth, unofficially 7-0 (score torn off for a grocery list now long gone, so I don't have the final).
Fun day, welcome rain, more welcome rugby for folks. Here's to more of it.
HIGH SCHOOL GAMES
SFGG 63 – Sierra 0 Referee: Preston Gordon
Referee Coach: Bryant Byrnes
This was the last match of the day (of five), and while it was fast, it was over by about 15 minutes into the game. At the half the score stood at 29-0 in favor of the home side. SFGG had many more bodies available for substitutions, and was better in the loose. Kudos to both sides for the fair contest in every aspect.
Afterwards, Bryant Byrnes and I discussed the match over beer and sausages, courtesy of SFGG. The bonus of the day goes to the weather - the pitch was a bit wet (which caused a bunch of knock-ons) but the rain held off!
SFGG frosh/soph 69 – Golden Valley frosh/soph 0 Referee: Eric Rauscher
Three 20 min periods. Coaches on the field, me coaching too. Excited kids playing for their first time. SFGG dominated, but all had a good time. SFGG's #15 (Tommy Giles sp?) was terrific in his role of kicking conversions.
LIVE OAK 7 tries – Tri-Valley & Valley Christian combined 0 Referee: Bruce Bernstein
Seconds, ten-a-side: Live Oak 0 – TRI-VALLEY 8 tries Ref: Bernstein
Seconds: SFGG 17 – Marin High 8 Referee: Bryant Byrnes
This was a late replacement match for a rained out game; many thanks to Bjorn for assigning it.
A gray and damp day on TI. Evenly matched, the teams played with spirit and skill-it was only decided in the last 10 minutes. My compliments to the players, the coaches, and SFGG for its hospitality and warm clubhouse.
PITTS 36 – Montgomery 5 Referee: Cary Bertolone
Reffed a practice game between the two high school squads on a soft "For Pete's Sake" rugby pitch in Santa Rosa. Pitt dominated play, especially in the first half when they had their varsity team in. Strong forward play with good inside back play had Montgomery on their heels most of the day, but Montgomery never gave up and had some strong forward play of their own along side a very good flyhalf. It was 24-0 at the half, but ended up 36-5 as the second half became much more even. Lots of fun!!!
MOTHER LODE – Santa Rosa Referee: John Tomasin
The second game was reffed by Dr. John Tomasin and it was between Santa Rosa High School Rugby Club and the Mother Lode H.S. team from Sac. It kicked off at 1:00 and was dominated by Mother Lode as Santa Rosa is in a rebuilding year, having lost 15 Seniors to graduation and a couple others to Scholarship requirements (no rugby because of College). They played valiantly and Doc kept the game in complete control and all had a good time. I don't know the score, but it was a big win for the Mother Lode and a great day for high school rugby.
NEW WEBSITE: www.rugbyUNITED.com
Chris Clever, who learned his rugby in the NCRFU, launching a career that has taken him to Blackheath, Olympic Club and now OMBAC, checks in with his latest labor of love:
“I wanted to tell you about and send a link your way of a little endeavor that a few rugby friends and myself have embarked upon. We have launched a website that incorporates International and Domestic rugby news and an online social network that brings together rugby players, teams and fans through set groups and blogs. We also have great photo uploading capabilities.
“Please take a look, navigate around and build a profile, start a group. Go nuts! Don't forget to spread the word to anyone that may be interested.”
THIS WEEK’S PHOTO
Preston Gordon forwards this shot that his brother took in Baja California Sur.
For the Senate