Tuesday, April 27, 2010




Got Friday? Let Friday be a Rugby Day, at the Steuber Family Rugby Stadium.

Three NorCal teams will be playing national semi-finals: the California men, and the women of Stanford and UC Santa Cruz.

See you there?

Tell you what - we also need someone who can pick up a vagabond referee at SFO, Friday morning at 7:45, and get him to the referee meeting in Palo Alto by nine. Tim Luscombe would then owe you. Let us know.


Which means you should be, too:

May 8: Wine Country Classic at For Pete’s Sake field
May 15: Stanford Collegiate Sevens Tournament
June 26: Palo Alto Summer Sevens
July 10: Palo Alto
July 24: Palo Alto

Please let us know if you can referee on May 8 (there are at least five fifteens games, besides the sevens tournament)


There is hope of having it during the pre-season, in the autumn.


MARIN R.E.D.S. 30 – Berkeley 17 Referee: Scott Wood
TJs: Gordon Fallone (Marin); Justin Ryan / Tony Stewart (Berkeley)
Venue: MLK Park, Marin

After an exciting Division 3 season, Marin (9-2) hosted Berkeley (9-2) for the #2 PCRFU spot. Both teams will be moving up to the second division next year.

We arrived to find both teams warming up on their respective sidelines. An investigation of the pitch conditions found a wetlands mitigation project in the middle and a thistle abatement program marginally under control throughout the grounds. In what is becoming a welcome process, the teams had filled out match cards at the ready.

Marin capitalized off an early penalty to open the scoring. However, Berkeley was undeterred and answered with a penalty goal of their own. Marin maneuvered through the visitor's backline to score a converted try. Possession switched back and forth with each team gaining points off penalty goals (it may sound like a lot of penalties but I think the total was around 20--not bad for D3) before Marin scored an unconverted try to close the half with a 24-9 lead.

Berkeley opened the second half on fire. Their energy kept Marin on the back foot until capitalizing off a penalty goal. The teams swapped possession numerous times before Berkeley's #19, fresh off the bench, dashed up the sideline untouched to score a try in the corner to reduce Marin's lead to seven.

Marin ratcheted up their attack but Berkeley was not without answer. Two silly penalties by Berkeley gave Marin a 13 point edge as the half wound down.

The referee was not gaff-free. With less than a minute remaining, Berkeley went on attack. They put together multiple rucks to within a couple meters of the goal line. Finally, as they punched through Marin's defense the referee ran around the contact point to view the grounding. The pitch slants at an odd angle so it looked like the grounding was beyond the corner flag. With no line in sight of the casually observing referee, he signaled TRY...then saw the white line. Even though the game was at full time, the referee awarded a scrum to Berkeley (in an attempt of fairness).

Marin stole the ball against the head and cleared the ball downfield. Berkeley managed to attack to within 22 meters of the goal when they lost the ball. Game over. Marin takes the match 30-17.

Quotes of the match:

Ref: "Kick or choose a side."
Captain A: "We'll take a side."
Ref: "Okay, which side?"
Captain A (pointing): "That one."
Captain B: "We'll receive the ball."
Ref: "Um, you kick off, they chose a side."
Captain B: "Why?"
Ref: "Because they won the toss and chose a side, you kick off." (Law 6.A.3)
Captain B: "Do we have to kick?"
Ref: "No, but if you don't it will be a free kick to the other team
for delay of game." (Law 10.2.b)

One team is penalized for obstruction:
Teammate: "Sir, it was accidental."
Ref: "Perhaps, but it is still a penalty." (Law 10.1.c)
Teammate: "Sir! It's a short arm penalty."
Ref: "What?"
Teammate: "It's a free kick because it was accidental."

Ref (after erroneously awarding a try): "S***!"

Marin advances to the USA Rugby national D3 championships May 22-23.

PACIFIC COAST D2 playoffs will be this weekend in Boise, Idaho. The referee pool includes Jim Crenshaw, Joe Leisek and Phil Akroyd.

Fresno vs. Valley
Red Mountain vs. Snake River

Tempe vs. Santa Rosa
SFGG vs. Pacific Rovers

THE PACIFIC COAST D1 playoffs will be played on May 1. Winners of these four games will advance to play the top four teams from SoCal on May 8.

Olympic Club – BYE
Sacramento Lions – North Side Tigers
Provo Steelers – Bay Barbarians in Provo, Utah
Salt Lake City Spartans – East Palo Alto in Salt Lake City


Super league:
Well, this first one isn’t a playoff game but with the victory SFGG secured first place in the western conference with one game left in the season.

That means they will host a quarter-final match at the Golden Gate tournament on May 15.

SF/Golden Gate SL 62 – OPSB 33 Referee: Paul Bretz
ARs: Aruna Ranaweera, LuAnn Campbell
Evaluator: Mark Koiwai

OPSB took a 13-nothing lead, which felt like an earthquake to the growing crowd that Rocca Field has been attracting this season. But the world was set right by halftime, when the home XV had a one-point lead, and then the second half featured three of Mile Pulu’s four trys.

Division One:
O Club completed a perfect record, no losses or ties in the season. East Palo Alto only lost to them in the last two minutes the first time they met, and this was little different:

OLYMPIC CLUB 18 – East Palo Alto 13 Referee: Chris Tucker
AR: Bruce Bernstein
Evaluator: David Williamson
A great day for rugby at the GAA fields: sun and a light breeze. Both teams were clearly up for it, with a hard fought first half. O Club were their own worst enemy at times, with some wayward kicking and a repeatedly crooked scrum feed. A pity, since their scrum was clearly stronger, so why not put it in straight? You'll win anyway. But I digress: O Club opened up the scoring with a penalty, but that was all they could muster in the first as EPA put the pressure on, scoring once (should have been twice, but for a last-pass knock-on). Half time score, 3-5.

Second half was no less well matched. EPA scored on a long break to make it 10-3, before O Club evened it up after camping out on the goal line for a while (try converted). A perfectly-taken drop goal by EPA and a replying penalty kept it even until the last 10 minutes, when the home side crashed over for what looked like the winning score. As time was expiring, however, the scrum half fed his 2nd row directly on a 5m scrum, and EPA came out running. 90 metres later, the fullback finally stopped the attack, the ball was turned over and the game was done. Highly enjoyable game of rugby :)

Seconds: OLYMPIC CLUB 7 tries– East Palo Alto 2 tries Referee: Bruce Bernstein
Match was played as 10's with much running & sprinting. O Club forwards were better around the field playing a 7's game. EPA held tough & getting their scores came late in the match.

Was lucky enough to AR Chris Tucker do the first side's & it was a great game to be part of & Chris did a hell of a job keeping up with the breakdowns & tries & getting all the calls I saw right.

SAN MATEO by forfeit over Reno

SACRAMENTO CAPITALS 28 – Barbarians 26 Referee: Mike Laporte (Alberta)
Capitals scored on a penalty goal at the end of the game. I awarded a penalty to Capitals to have a second attempt due to hearing Barbarians making noise while the kicker was kicking at goal. Both teams played hard and eventually, less talking on the field and from the sidelines.

I had fun and had my hands full with game management tasks with these two teams. Barbarians’ captain (2) reported to me he was not happy with my calls. I listened to him and joined the teams for social following the match.

Thanks again for the opportunity.

Division Two Season Finishes:
The order of finish and the three teams that will play in Boise was Fresno, SFGG and Santa Rosa.

SAN FRANCISCO GOLDEN GATE COLTS 92 – Vallejo 7 Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
Assistant Referee: LuAnn Campbell (SCRRS)
Since my RSL match in Chicago got postponed, I was thrilled to referee in the bay area, something I hadn't done since February. After some delays, including hasty arrangements to obtain CIPP information from Vallejo, the match kicked off at noon under beautiful sunny conditions at Treasure Island. Both teams showed good sportsmanship and effort, but SFGG's dominance was clear as they played 15-man sevens to rack up 11 tries to lead 71-0 after 40 minutes. To avoid delaying the 1:30pm HS playoff match, both sides agreed to play an abbreviated second half. Vallejo scored a converted try, but SFGG replied with 3 more tries to win 92-7 after just 55 minutes of playing time, a total of 14 tries to 1.

Much thanks to LuAnn Campbell for her help as Assistant Referee. (She was in town as AR for the SFGG RSL match.)

DIABLO GAELS 41 – Vacaville 28 Referee: Charl Erasmus (Gloucestershire, RFU)

BA Baracus 19 – FRESNO 20 Referee: Roberto Santiago
This one was every bit as close as the score indicates. Play and possession careened back and forth in a flurry of recycled ball, powerful runs, and more ball kicked directly out than I’ve seen so far this year. This game was a good test of several of the “who brought the ball where and then who did what with it and where do we go next” laws. Baracus scored first on a penalty kick, then again with a converted try to take a 10-0 lead. Fresno answered back to tie the score with a penalty kick for 3 followed by a smash and dash run by their outside center. The teams traded penalty kicks for a half time score of 13-13.

Second verse was same as the first in terms of the style of play. Baracus regained the lead with a penalty conversion eight minutes in to the second half but Fresno answered with a converted try just two minutes later. Three minutes after Fresno’s try the home side hit another penalty conversion to pull just one point behind. And that’s where it stayed for the last twenty-seven minutes. Baracus had a shot to take the lead again when a punch resulted in a yellow card to Fresno with about three minutes left but the 40+ meter kick was just a bit short.

Thanks to both sides for a fun match.

Seconds: BARACUS 17 – Fresno 5 Ref: Santiago, segue to the Unknown Blower
This was the first half score. I was happy to run the B side after the teams played such a well mannered A side. Sadly I had to leave early to attend to duties at home. Overall this one was played in good spirits with plenty of interesting commentary from the front rows.

At one point a Fresno player dislocated his knee and indicated he needed help. My idea, that he needed help to the sideline was proven wrong when he instructed his teammate to “pull my leg.” I know what a finger pull gets you and I was afraid of what might come from a leg pull. After having his leg pulled as if he were a stubborn lawn mower the injured man hopped up ad called for a sub. The sub was for the player behind him in the lineout who was tired. Mr. Kneecap stayed in and continued his role as in the lineout. Fun stuff.

The teams played on as I packed up to head home. Thanks again to both sides.

Seahawks 26 – SANTA ROSA 45 Referee: James Hinkin
With their regular field unavailable San Jose hosted Santa Rose down at the Morgan Hill Soccer Complex. A small, but well maintained pitch with trees and fences along one sideline and one try zone and acres of space along the opposite sides. Naturally, of course, that meant that all scoring was done at the tree end and all the kicks went over the fence and into the trees causing numerous delays to get a ball onto the field. At times there were upwards of three balls being retrieved as a fourth was in play. Santa Rosa, playing with the wind, started on fire and kept San Jose under pressure the entirety of the first half. An early penalty followed by a converted try gave the visitors a 10-0 cushion when some ill discipline sent San Jose's most potent back to the sin bin to think about the error of his ways. Santa Rose exploited the advantage and kept the pressure on even when San Jose was back at full strength to run in 6 tries in the half - all converted - and go to the break up 45-0.

The second half was dominated by San Jose as they finally decided to tackle with conviction and run with support. With support runners following up the line breaks the Seahawks were able to start mounting a comeback with a quick 3 try burst at the start of the half. Santa Rosa then stabled the ship and were countering effectively and the game became balanced at that point with Santa Rosa missing some scoring chances with poor handling while San Jose was able to get one more try in. It was too little too late for the Seahawks as Santa Rosa hung on for a convincing 45-26 win.

Arroyo Grande 19 – CHICO 37 Referee: Paul Phillips (SoCal)
It was a good first half, 15 - 14 Chico, but then Chico ran away with it in the second half for a final score of 37-19.


Señors 20 – BALD EAGLES 25 Referee: Bjorn Stumer
This was a brief two 15-mins halves affair designed to give the old boys a run, and to catch up on the multi-match schedule at the busy Rocca Field in Treasure Island. The old boys did not seem to mind the short match, also in light of the fact that the day had grown quite warm, the pitch was hard, and the shortages of players -12 per side, created a lot of space for those having speed left. For an old boys match there was a lot of speed and determination on display and, as no kicks were allowed, fluid champagne Rugby was on tap for all involved.

The Bald Eagles, a perennial presence in the regional veterans’ action, seemed to be the better side, but the Señors were soon at their heels and a total of five tries were scored in the first half. More try scoring accentuated the second half, with the Señors continuously nipping at the Bald Eagles' heels. A thrilling finale was missed as, on the very last play of the match, a Señors' back ran the distance of the pitch attempting a try in the corner; this would have tied the match. However, a last-meter tackle caused the Señors player to knock in-goal. Final whistle followed and your referee did not have to buy beer due to a tied score. Great fun for all. It was good to see so many familiar faces, and to see that old boys Rugby is alive and well.

Silverhawks – Nevada Old Boys
No report received. Not sure who reffed.

UOP – Sierra College seconds
No referee to assign.

Aptos – Somebody
No referee to assign.

Women’s Territorial All-Stars
PC GRIZZLIES – Mid-Atlantic RFU Referee: Bob Sproull (New England)
We received a partial score: Grizzlies up 47 to nothing at the half.


Single-school HS semi-finals:
BELLARMINE – Dixon Referee: Pete Smith

JESUIT over De La Salle by forfeit

Bellarmine will play Jesuit next week for the single-school championship.

De La Salle – Diablo Referee: Charl Erasmus (Gloucestershire, RFU)
No report received.


NorCal HS U19 play-in games:
Cougar – HAYWARD Referee: Rich Anderson
GOLDEN GATE – Christian Brothers Referee: John Coppinger

NorCal HS U19 quarter-finals:
Lamorinda – East Palo Alto
Peninsula Green – Hayward
Marin Highlanders – SFGG
Vacaville – Santa Rosa

JESUIT 57 – St. Mary's 15 Referee: Tom Zanarini
My first trip to Jesuit turned out to be a great experience. Both teams were warming up upon my arrival. Jesuit has numbers on top of numbers and St. Mary's high school produced 14 + 1 Jesuit scrumhalf. St. Mary's is a new team and is under the expert coaching of our own JC Van Staden.

Jesuit started strong, scoring 3 tries relatively quickly. St. Mary's gathered their bearings shortly after and really brought their play up in the second half. The attacking for both teams was fast and the sportsmanship was grand. St. Mary's is a team to watch in the very near future.

I could have 25 bad matches in a row, but when I remember days like these it would keep me coming out.

Golden Gate frosh/soph 58 – Berkeley JV 0 Referee: Bryant Byrnes
The curtain raiser on TI, after which the writer got in his car and drove to San Jose for the high school invitational tourney.

The Rhinos under the cheerful tutelage of Dave Williamson are a club on the upswing; 40 kids at practice! In the 90s there would be 6. But SFGG is a club at full flood. The comment of the SFGG coach after the game told the tale succinctly- "You know, these kids have been together for 5 years."

At San Jose State

This tournament, in its sixth year, was played in gorgeous weather on three pitches immediately adjacent to Spartan Stadium, two of them the grass practice facilities for the football team.

The short-handed Pelicanrefs (note two games listed above which could not be assigned referees) were bailed out by Chris Gleiter, Andrew Lin and Dave Thomas of the SoCal society who attended at their own expense, thus allowing us to cover what games we did.

This event is popular among teams that have not qualified for the playoffs and the lower-grade sides of those that did.

They competed in four brackets: Gold, Bronze, Frosh/Soph and Girls.

Gold: PLEASANTON over Islanders
Bronze: LIVE OAK over Kennedy
Frosh/Soph: LAMORINDA over Golden Gate
Girls: BUDD BAY (Olympic, Wash.) over Bishop O’Dowd

USA College playoffs in Florida, April 17-18:

MIAMI (OH) 27 – Middlebury College 23 Referee: Chris Tucker
ARs: Gerty + Gary (locals from Florida)
4th: Pattalock

Orlando, FL is similar in many ways to Sacramento. It's warm, it's flat and they play good rugby there. It's also humid, but that's another story. I was assigned a D2 men's game in the round of 16, so the nerves were jangling a little, but 2 solid ARs and a friendly face in Donny P go a long way to keeping the lid on it. Routine done with, whistle and sprint to the first breakdown. Middlebury straight off feet, whistle, my stall was set out and we were off and running. Miami was the more organised and energetic in the first half, building up a lead of 24 to 10. The tries were all but one scored in the corners, and this is where the ARs earned their keep -- 3 times they called the grounding when the teams punched it in down the blindside. Both sides lost a player to the bin for a trip on their opponents, but generally the game was played with a simmering tension that never really bubbled over, aside from a quick scuffle that was resolved with a handshake and a grin.

Now the second half was a different story. Miami went to sleep, scoring only a penalty as Middlebury fought back with 13 points to try to defend their D2 crown. But time ran out as they knocked on just before time. The final scrum should have put the game out of reach, but astonishingly, Middlebury took one against the head and peeled off down the blindside, charging into opponents territory before finally the Miami wing put in a desperation tackle and took the attacker out, ending a highly entertaining contest.

By Eric Rauscher

Exchange to Victoria, Canada
My plane leaves SFO at 11:35 am Thursday morning. I arrive at Victoria at 2:14 pm. I am met in the terminal by Keith Morrison and we walk out to his car which is parked at the curb. In passenger loading/unloading area. Quite a bit different from the U.S. We drive to my first game which is a high school game at 3:45 pm. Stellys 5/Esquimalt 55. It's sunny, with a chill wind. The pitch is wonderful turf, but hardly visible lines. The flags are only at goals. But, do the game anyway. It was good-spirited play by Stellys, but this game was a demonstration that size and skill do make a difference. Keith then drives me to the James Bay Inn (downtown Victoria) where I will be staying. A quick shower and a pint, and salmon dinner downstairs, then off to the James Bay Athletic Association, which is established in 1886. There I am bought a pint and I meet several people and tour the facilities, which are very interesting. John De Goede gives me the tour and tells me a little bit of the history of the club, which was originally a rowing club, but now has multiple rugby teams, one in the premier division. Keith drives me back to the Inn by about 9 pm, and into bed.

Friday I sleep in until 7 am, with coffee and breakfast downstairs. I take a stroll downtown and tour the government houses and the Royal British Columbia Museum. Back by noon to meet Jim Crenshaw at the hotel. Then off for a fish and chips lunch down at the wharf. Jim lures me into an ice cream parlor for homemade ice cream. We then spent one and a half hours at the Maritime museum. When we came out, we had to walk through the rain back to the hotel. That evening Keith picks us up and we go to John De Goede's house for dinner. There were about ten people there, including another referee named Bruce Kuklinsky (I can't remember all who were there).

Saturday morning, Keith picks us up at 9:30 am and off to games! He and Jim go one way, and I am transferred to Ashley Anderson. We head out into the country for me to do a woman's club game. Cowichan 0/ Velox 33. Nice pitch, with a couple mud patches, but this one has flags and lines. There were a couple of sprinkles during the game, but it wasn't bad. I learned that Velox had 2-3 Canadian internationals on their team, and they won pretty handily. We drive back to Velox in time to see Jim finishing up his game, and then Jim and I run touch for John in a close game. Velox 45/Vancouver Rowing RFC 47. Home for a shower, and then out for dinner at an Irish pub with 8 in attendance. After dinner, we made a fruitless attempt for more ice cream as they were closed. We were back at the hotel by 10 pm.

Sunday morning, Jim and I walked downtown to find ourselves trapped in a 10k race tour by barriers. We were forced to cross the finish line in a backwards direction. Luckily, the race hadn't started yet and we weren't mobbed by the thirteen thousand people running it. We found a Starbucks and had coffee, and then went back to the hotel. Keith shows up at 10:30 and gives us a ride to the airport. We bid a fond farewell to Canada. Keith Morrison was a true gift to Jim and me.
Eric Rauscher

By Preston Gordon

Saturday, April 24th

RC Genève 26-6 RC Nyon
1400, Stade Cherpines, Plan-Les-Ouates
Referee Coach: Rachel Boyland (née Allen)


I thought I'd get some rugby in while on vacation here in Switzerland. First up was this men's NLA (first division) match in the far southwest corner of the country, between Geneva and France. I arrived in Zürich Friday morning, walked off the stiffness from 6000+ miles of flying, drank several liters of water, had a short nap, and hit my favorite Italian joint for some fuel (penne alla casa with chicken) at dinner. My clubmates weren't playing until Sunday, so they attempted to drag me out on the traditional Friday evening pub crawl, but they didn't get too far with that - I took a fairly early taxi home and called it a night.

Saturday morning started with a stop at the grocery store for some breakfast stuff and game supplies. I caught the train into Zürich around 0845, and then the next one to Geneva. I put away another couple of liters of water during the 3.5 hour trip. Once I got there, I found that some things had changed since I was last in town: lots of construction meant that one of the tram stops had moved, and I found myself marooned at a soccer stadium in the wrong town with only 75 minutes until kickoff. Luckily I was able to look up the number for the taxi service on my phone, and even more luckily, I was able to order a taxi in French. I ended up getting to the pitch with an hour to spare, leaving plenty of time to warm up and do the pre-game stuff.

Before the game started we all observed a minute of silence for the Hermance player who lost his life in a recent motorcycle accident.

On to the game... Geneva was 2nd in the standings while Nyon was 7th (out of 8). The game was a fair reflection of that. Geneva opened the scoring in the 3rd minute with a converted try, after Nyon let one of their backs run through most of the defense untouched. The rest of the half was a tussle for possession, but Geneva played the territory better and added 2 more converted tries. Nyon answered with a penalty goal, leaving the halftime score at 21-3.

In the second half the 70-degree heat and humidity seemed to get to the players. It seemed like there was a dropped ball every couple of minutes, and unfortunately there was no opportunity to play advantage most of the time. The repeated scrums soon wore out the forwards, and I really had to loosen the standards in an attempt to let some rugby happen. The players seemed to react positively to that management approach instead of letting things get ugly, and there was a good bit of ball movement in the backlines, but after every 3rd or 4th pass there would be another knock-on. As it turned out, Geneva only added one more unconverted try in the second half while Nyon kicked another penalty goal, leaving the final result at 26-6. The crowd of a hundred or so seemed entertained, even though the rugby on display was not the best.

One thing I found funny was that more than half of these players were expats who didn't speak a word of French. This is a change from a few years ago, where you'd have to find the one guy who spoke English in order to communicate with the teams. I had been watching a lot of Top 14 (the French premiership) rugby lately in order to learn the right words to manage players and describe penalties, but when I found myself shouting "cinc bleu, stop, vous etes hors-jeu" at one of the Genevois, with no effect, I realized it would be a better idea to use both languages. It's an interesting challenge and adds a whole new layer of complexity to the game.

Another couple of liters of water were required after the match in order to fight off the airplane-induced dehydration. After that, I changed and talked over the match with Rachel while watching the first part of the second side game. Geneva's hospitality was quite good, and when the subject of the match fee came up (NLA matches pay the ref 70 francs, equivalent to 70 dollars these days), I told them that while I couldn't be paid to referee the game, I would be happy to take one of their club balls home with me. And so the deal was done, and I headed back to Zürich. The train connection on the way back was via the southern route, which runs along the north shore of the Lake of Geneva with the French and Swiss Alps as a backdrop. Once back in town, I met up for a couple of beers with two old workmates, but that ended pretty early as well since there was a game to do on Sunday.

One other thing: the Geneva guys asked me about coming to Northern California for a tour. I recommended that they aim for October/November as that would be a good time for pre-season games and a chance for some decent weather. The Swiss men's season is split in half, similar to the way the US east coast teams play, so they would be on their winter break then. We exchanged contact information and hopefully something will come of it.

Sunday, April 25th

GC Zürich 2nd XV 55-3 RC Solothurn
1230, Allmend Brunau, Zürich


One of the reasons I picked this time to come to Switzerland was the scheduling - GCZ plays home matches on Sundays, and this weekend and the following one have home games for both the 1sts and 2nds. These are good rugby occasions, with the BBQ going, kegs of beer, and lots of spectators. When I rolled up to the field, I was happily surprised to see about 60 kids playing. The club has had this "academy" for some time now, but it's grown substantially in the last couple of years and that bodes well for the future.

Once I had changed and said hello to everyone it was time to warm up. I found that my need for water wasn't so severe now that I had been on the ground for an extra 24 hours. The weather was pretty similar to the preceding day, about 70 degrees and some clouds. These two teams play in the NLC (third division), and Solothurn is a new entrant to the competition since I was here in 2006. GCZ had a full roster, while Solothurn had exactly 15 men. These two teams played each other in Solothurn the preceding week, where Zürich won 8-5 in a game that was described by several different people as terrible.

While doing the boot check I found one guy wearing American football cleats with toe studs. He was surprised that I asked him to remove them - apparently nobody had objected in the past 2 years. Some referee had apparently even said it didn't matter since the team played in the NLC... nonsense!

We kicked off on time, minus two toe studs. It wasn't long before the home team got their first try. Fitness was not a problem for either of these teams, and there was a lot of good ball movement by both sides. Zürich's execution was a bit better though, and they played the territorial game better. They were also able to win most of their breakdowns, and turn over a couple of Solothurn's. The GCZ fly-half was also hitting conversions from all over the place. At halftime the score was 38-0, from 5 converted tries and a penalty goal.

The second half wasn't quite the same blowout. GCZ took their foot off the gas a bit, and started committing silly penalties, but was able to add another 3 tries (1 of them converted). Solothurn got a consolation score just before the end of the game, putting a penalty goal over shortly after their drop goal attempt was charged down.

The only thing that marred the game were 2 yellow cards. The first one went to a Solothurn player in the 11th minute for a dangerous tackle. The second one went to Zürich in the 77th minute for a very unnecessary act of side entry, thus killing the ball at a ruck in the 22, after I had warned the skipper about the continuing misbehavior. Other than that, this was a great game, and everyone seemed to enjoy the occasion. The players all responded well to the positive management approach and aside from one occasion where I found myself in the way, I was happy with everything. The referee's match fee was redirected to the social fund.

The GCZ first team, which plays in the NLA, kicked off directly afterwards against CERN. I managed to avoid being collared to AR that one in favor of a shower and some food and beer, and enjoyed the sunshine with the rest of the ~200 supporters while watching CERN take a close one at 22-14.


SoCal at PCIT
Dave Thomas, Chris Gleiter and Andrew Lin flew up from Southern California (Andrew actually flying the plane) to help keep the rugby running on time at the Pacific Coast High School Invitational Tournament.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Thursday, April 22, 2010




Sam and Teresa Reagle retired to see North America a year ago and now they are retiring to a low-tax State: Texas.

Sam came to us from Denver about a dozen years ago and has been a stalwart of the Society ever since.

We’ll miss his celebration of the spirit of the game, his unique perspective on the world, and the times we’ve spent on tour and on the hiking trail enjoying life.

And there’s a good chance a lot of us will be moving to states like Texas in the coming decade or two. Get the rugby there ready for us, Sam!


MAY 1:
We have a need for at least 20 referees and ARs on Saturday, May 1. The current roster of availability shows nine.

We’ll need:

ARs, #4s and a #5 at Stanford for the college championships
Referee and ARs for a Pacific Coast men’s D1 playoff match
Referees for four U19 playoff games (it would be nice to have ARs but we’re dreaming)
Referees for two high school playoff games (single-school), with ARs for one of them, which is the championship
A referee for a women’s friendly match
A referee for a women’s college alumnae match

MAY 15-16:
Two tournaments:

Golden Gate Tournament – plenty of games for everyone
(SFGG is on track to hosting a quarter-final game that weekend)
California High School championship
NCRFU U19 championship

Stanford Collegiate Sevens Tournament (Saturday only)

We’ll need about three dozen refs this weekend.

PLEASE RESPOND with your availability for May 1 and May 15-16.


Redwood 5 – BERKELEY 32 Referee: Tom Zanarini
#4: Jake Rubin

MARIN 24 – San Bruno 18 Referee: Rich Anderson
On a sunny day in Marin, this Men's DIII playoff match did not start out well for the home team.

San Bruno was able to control the ball early with their pack, controlling Scrum and line outs, and running out to a 15-0 lead before Marin was able to right the ship with a couple of PKs to close the Half-time margin to 15-6.

Marin gained some consistency in their pack in the second half, then spun the ball wide late in the match to score the two tries that would allow them to move on in the playoffs.

Berkeley and Marin will play for the D3 championship this Saturday, Scott Wood to referee.


The California men, and the Stanford and UC Santa Cruz women will be playing national semi-finals at Stanford’s Steuber Family Rugby Stadium on April 30.

Here’s hoping they all get to play on Saturday, May 1, as well.


Sac Capitals 5 – OLYMPIC CLUB 67 Referee: Sione Tanoa
AR: Phil Akroyd
I was at the ground yesterday with Phil, I took the first game Phil took B side. My first game was between Sacramento Capitals and Olympic Club it was like a one-sided game which result in 67-5 to the Olympic club they really dominated in every department of the game especially their scrum and ruck situation.

Thank you very much for assigning me to that game; I’m really looking forward for next weekend.

Seconds: Sac Capitals – Olympic Club Referee: Phil Akroyd
An abridged and abbreviated friendly was played.

Reno 24 – SAC LIONS 41 Referee: Sam Reagle
ARs: Russ & Hannah Wilkening
Conditions: Warm & Breezy

This game was a classic tale of two halves. The pitch had a slight downward grade to the north and the breeze was from the south which may help to explain why 9 of the 11 tries were scored in the north goal. There could have been at least 2 more, but I don't want to get ahead of myself.

Reno won the toss and chose to kick so the Lions chose the wind. The short version is that Sacramento dominated play in the first half. The Zephyrs were playing good hard rugby, but Sac dominated the kicking game (except for conversions) pinning Reno deep time after time until a miscue went Sacramento's way. Sac also won most of the lineouts in the first half. They scored a try at 8 minutes, 20 minutes, 30 minutes, 33 minutes and to end the half converting only once for a 27-0 halftime lead.

The second half could have been a copy of the first going Reno's way were it not for 3 errant passes and a knock-on by a Reno player with room to run. On the first possession of this half, Reno attacked well thru 2 or 3 phases and then made a long pass that was poached for an easy Sac try ... unlucky. Reno took their next possession and marched confidently north for their first converted try at the 6 minute mark. The Lions tried to attack, but lost the ball in a maul where Reno drove to their 2nd try 4 minutes later.

Sacramento continued kicking for position and picked up a loose ball on the wing and scooted in for a converted try. The remaining 24 minutes were completely dominated by Reno. They scored tries at the 21 and 28 minute marks and probably would have scored 2 more tries if their passes had found the intended targets. The knock-on was the Zephyrs last good chance to score.

This was a great game played relatively penalty free. There were no penalty kicks attempted, though there were a few more scrums than I would normally expect in a D1 game. Just the same, I thoroughly enjoyed it. At the social, we talked about the playoffs and who the Lions are cheering for next week. As my wife and I are moving to the San Antonio area within the week, this is my last game in NorCal for quite a while. I plan to keep my NorCal kit and my many great memories for the rest of my life. Thanks to all of NorCal for a great experience. Hope to see you around.

Barbarians 8 – EAST PALO ALTO 20 Referee: George O’Neil

Seconds: Barbarians – East Palo Alto Referee: Greg Lundell
Assessor: Bryan Porter
Bay Barbarians and EPA Razorbacks scrapped together a B-side game of 20 minute halves. I’m going to say that the score was indeterminate as the same individuals scored for both teams at different points in the game. It was a friendly.

DIABLO GAELS 67 – Stanislaus 12 Referee: Bryant Byrnes
A sunny day on Mare Island-and while it was competitive rugby it also was all Gaels. Their sleek backs were like jets all day and could be slowed but not stopped. 36-5 at half, and more in the second half.

These are two teams I know and admire. I was a Gael for many years back in the day. John Compaglia was my hooker. I tip my hat to the job he and Harry Batten have done over the years. And what can one say about them Stanislaus fellas? Making the tough transition to D2 complicated by almost silly travel requirements, week in week out they showed up (often just 15) and played hard rugby. No quit in that dog.

Refs who like history should sign up for a Gaels match on Mare Island. It was the US Navy Ship Yard for more than 140 years-until 1996. It has a nice museum and wonderful old buildings.

FRESNO 25 – Santa Rosa 18 Referee: Jim Crenshaw

BA BARACUS 53 – Seahawks 5 Referee: Bruce Bernstein
It was only 10-0 at half & SJ lost their flyhalf & hooker both to hard tackles.

Baracus scored 6 tries (all on long runs & hook-ups) in the second half led by their 8, line-out jumper who stole a bunch of SJ's ball, & kicker.

Thanks for Ray Schwartz for his 1/2 time, & pre & post match coaching, which slightly offset the 3 meals I had to feed the Gorilla.

Chico 10 – SFGG 64 Referee: Scott Wood
TJs: Mitch Jagoe (Chico), Rich (SFGG)
Location: Pleasant Valley HS, Chico
YES! Finally a game not played in gopherville! Chico found a great spot of land at a local high school. Smooth pitch, great footing, and no (noticeable) gopher/snake warrens underfoot. Hopefully this will be a long-lasting venue.

Seventh place Chico (4-4) entered the match against second place SFGG (7-1). Both teams played a well-disciplined tactical game but the visitors found themselves occasionally on their backfoot due to ruck penalties. It took some doing but they finally got the concept that if a player is in contact over with the opposition, it's a ruck. If the referee "lets the contact-point breath" then calls "ruck", keep thy hands off the ball. Nonetheless, Chico was only able to capitalize off one attempt at goal. SFGG opened up the field with wily running and took advantage of missed tackles to enter the half leading 31-3.

At halftime, the teams rehydrated (it was, after all, a very warm and humid day) and returned to action. SFGG kept its hands out of the rucks and Chico was able to put on a number of attacks. Unfortunately, support players were at a minimum and the visitors were able to efficiently counter ruck and poach the ball. Missed tackles and side-stepping players allowed SFGG to put more points on the board. Chico was able to punch in a try (overheard: "Out game plan has changed, let's score at least one try!") despite SFGG's formidable defense.

Thanks go out to the captains, John and Casey (Chico) and Mike, Westy, and Pat (SFGG) for their exemplary leadership.

Seconds: Chico – SFGG Referee: Dan Lacko
Dan Lacko refereed the seconds match between Chico and SFGG/Mendocino/(???). I think Chico won but there were a lot of tries for both sides.

ARROYO GRANDE over Vallejo by forfeit

San Jose State 95 – ALUMNI 96 Referee: James Hinkin
On a picture perfect Saturday in San Jose the annual alumni game was held at San Jose St. The collegians were out in force warming up well before 1:00 but the alumni were "conserving energy" by trickling in at the last moment. We eventually got numbers for a match and we were underway. Played with good spirit and energy (at least on the college side) it was a fun game. Especially when (at the suggestion of the San Jose coach and Alumni captain) I staged a hissy fit at a scrum with about 15 minutes left and barred all forwards from participating in scrums and lineouts. Backs and forwards swapped places and some eyes were opened as to how the other side lives. This also gave me an opportunity to make a call that may be unique in the annals of rugby: the alumni tried to sneak a forward into the lineout so i gave a free kick for Forward Participating In A Lineout. Or maybe not unique - this isn't the first time backs and forwards have switched places and we all know forwards love to cheat.

The score reported probably isn't accurate, but I wouldn't know as i didn't bother keeping score.

MENDOCINO over Diablo U23 by forfeit

U. of San Francisco 7 – UC SANTA CRUZ 58 Referee: Cary Bertolone
At USF on Saturday, we had a kick-off at 4:00 PM. Within 5 minutes, both teams scored and we seemed to have an even match. That quickly changed with Santa Cruz piling on 7 more first half tries for a 48-7 halftime lead. USF failed to make tackles and rarely made low tackles, allowing Santa Cruz to dominate with timely passes and eventual overlaps. The second half was more evenly matched, as neither team scored for the first 30 minutes. Santa Cruz scored two more tries in the end for a 58-7 final score.


STANFORD GRAD SCHOOLS 40 – UCLA grad schools 0 Referee: Stephen Moore
Friendly match. Lots of fun. Entertaining chant by Stanford at the end of the game. Loss of clothes by one player and entertaining sprint around the field! The day was finished off with some liquid refreshments down at the local, some WWI rugby poetry and a ‘boat’ race including an official! Great day in sport all n all, I hope I get to participate in more matches like this!


UCSD women (babies) v. UCSD alumni (olden goldies) Referee: Sam Davis
I was the guest ref at the UCSD women’s alumni game this weekend. It was good to catch up with a number of the great women ruggers that have played there over the past 9 years. Most of the "babies" were in their first or second year. The oldies had a number of players that had National experience. The game was lopsided but a lot of fun. The oldies had costumes (IRB approved of course) that dazzled the youngsters with all their "gold" At the end of the first half the oldies were up 45-0 the youngsters were switching players around to see if they had a combination that would stop the old farts. At half time a new oldie showed up for the game so they had their first substitution. With a 16 woman roster the end of the game was 74-0 It was fun to be involved in this game since it has so many great women rugby players. I am sure the youngsters are planning on a rematch next year so oldies watch out. ;-) The Ladies retired to the party where we all had a great time. Even score at the party so UCSD won the party since it was their home field.


Skyhawk Playoffs
SAN MATEO 29 – Bellarmine 7 Referee: Chris Fisher
PENINSULA GREEN 7 – East Palo Alto 0 Ref: Fisher

Preston Gordon:
The 2 "games" I was asked to do were each 20 minute JV/B-side affairs. The first was Peninsula Green against Bellarmine, followed by Peninsula Green against San Mateo. The ball was thrown around, a couple of tries were scored each way, and then we had sandwiches and went home. It was nice to have a short run, after Vallejo couldn't get the numbers to make the trip to Arroyo Grande, but that's about all I got out of this.

I'm looking forward to RC Genève - RC Nyon on Saturday, followed by GC Zürich 2nds vs RC Solothurn on Sunday. That assumes I can get to Switzerland though - things are still up in the air at the moment, but I hope the volcanic eruption cools off and that the ash problem blows over (apologies for the triple pun)!

Thursday 5 PM
FAIRFIELD PREP (touring HS side from CT) 38 – SFGG JV 22 Referee: Bruce Bernstein
Match was tied at the half 12-12 which Fairfield went ahead mainly due to their fullback running elusively around &/or past SFGG tacklers.

Friday Night

Dixon 6 – COUGARS 24 Referee: Phil Akroyd
Too much to go into in one report, but Cougars came out playing contrary to the Law and never wanted to change, even though they suffered four yellows (one for a shoulder charge on a tackled player on the ground, two for high tackles, one for team ruck offenses) and one red card for a spear tackle called in by Jim Crenshaw on flag-carrying duty. In typical Jim fashion, he said he would have issued more cards.

The captain was unwilling to change the style of play, so I had to resort to the cards. Dixon looked uninterested in getting involved in this “nothing” game and I can’t blame them.

At one point, Cougar had three players off the field and still scored tries. The disappointing thing was that they could have put over sixty points on the board if they had played by the book.

Varsity: Elsie Allen 15 – ROSA/NEWMAN 22 Referee: Sean Peters
At Elsie Allen, 6:30 kick-off, the Rosa high school squad took the lead and controlled the game through the first three quarters. Elsie made a furious comeback, but it was not enough between these very evenly matched teams (who tied in their first match) and Rosa won the battle for 2nd place and the right to compete in the playoffs.

JV: ELSIE ALLEN 31 – Rosa/Newman 28 Referee: Cary Bertolone
Barnburner with Elsie scoring the last try with minutes to go to win 31-28.


Varsity: Piedmont High School 7 – DE LA SALLE 24 Referee: Bjorn Stumer
A spirited affair between a capable, albeit chatty, Piedmont side vs an equally capable and determined De La Salle team. The first half was quite even with a converted try apiece and a Piedmont side which, through repeated attacks, seemed to be the side that would carry the day. This was not to be the case, as the hosts lost composure in the second half. De La Salle capitalized in the fact and ran away with the match scoring an additional two converted tries and a penalty. Lots of hard running and effective tackling, but both sides would benefit from more preparatory work on rucks and mauls. De La Salle exhibited a propensity towards the dangerous tackle which was soon corrected with a yellow card. They also had a hard time staying on their feet, which put them at the receiving end of another yellow card. Both shortages however did not get them flustered as they seemed to get better as the clock ticked by. Final score Piedmont 7 (7) - De La Salle 24 (7). Superb weather, great facilities and hospitality with a good crowd on tap made this a very enjoyable evening for all involved.


BISHOP O’DOWD 30 – Piedmont 24 Referee: Sam Davis
It was a game of two halves PITS dominated the first half 19 -0 running up the middle with pick and drives then dishing it off to the backs. There # 8 had two tries and was a hard man to bring down. It was not the crisp PITS team I had the chance to ref in the past but they looked good. The half ended and I assumed that the 2nd half would be the same.

This is BOD first year and Coach Ray Lehner must have a great half time speech. The teams switched sided and the rest is history. It looked like PITS got overconfident and BOD caught the momentum. Nothing happened for the first 12 mins. On an obstruction penalty on PITS's 20 a quick tap and go and it was a score in the corner. I put the 5 points on the card and then put it away. I assumed that BOD would not make the kick. I was wrong it was on the sideline and out about 30 meters it sailed between the uprights 10 feet off the center bar. In the next 15 mins BOD put three more tries on the board and all the kicks were good. PITS came back hard and scored one more goal with 21 seconds in the game the kick was wide and the game ended. It was a great game to participate in.


“Just to clear up the report you put out, since everyone gets their news from you, (thanks for the detailed eligibility explanation)...Vacaville agreed to forfeit the match as none of the UC Davis players they used was registered with them, our D2 coordinator is on board with that result etc...So at the end of the day Baracus 8-0 forfeit win.”

By Joe Leisek

Former Pelican referee Bo Rodman died on Monday, April 12, in Boulder Creek. He was 46. He is survived by his wife Janet and children Calvin, 13, and Claire, 9. Bo was a dedicated referee who lived and worked for many years in Sonoma County and refereed as many high school and NCRFU matches as possible. In addition to his colleagues in Northern California, Bo had lots of rugby friends in the Pacific Northwest, having played hooker for the Seattle Rugby Club many years ago. In fact, Bo and Janet met at a sevens tournament in Seattle. Refereeing was a major source of enjoyment for Bo, and he took his son along for many games. In fact, until recently Calvin was the youngest certified touch judge on the Pacific Coast (that title may now be held by a young AR named Ben Bravo). Bo was an excellent golfer and an ardent Seattle Mariners fan. A few years ago he moved with his family to Redmond, Oregon. After the move he refereed in Oregon and throughout the Pacific Northwest. He refereed his last game about a month ago. No services are planned. Contributions may be made to the National MS Society, Oregon Chapter, or to a charity of the giver's choice.

Secret Garden Pelican
Helen Marcus found this for you in the Secret Garden in lovely Carmel-by-the-Sea last week.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Friday, April 16, 2010




Phil Akroyd has earned promotion to L1. Congratulations to another young Pelican on an upward trajectory.


The final of our monthly meetings for the 2010 season will be April 14, from 7 to 9 PM, at the SF/Golden Gate clubhouse on Treasure Island.

Part of the focus will be on assistant refereeing, with the various playoffs coming up. We’ll also be welcoming a new member from Fiji, Sione Tanoa.

Food will be available for early arrivals starting at 6 PM.


Roberto Santiago’s wife Tenysa planned a surprise trip for them that included a departure early Saturday morning.

In order to maintain the surprise, Roberto was ‘scheduled’ to referee the San Mateo – Barbarians seconds and made the usual preparations.

However, first-side referee Joe Leisek and the real second-side official Bryant Byrnes were in on the deception.

All went according to plan and we hope that Roberto’s dashed hopes were quickly replaced by the joy and spontaneity that a thoughtful spouse brings to a marriage.


BERKELEY 12 – East Palo Alto U23, 7 Referee: Pete Smith
AR: Eric Rauscher
This is a case where the score reflects how close the game was, but not necessarily who the better team was on the day, sort of…It was a combination of EPA’s inability to finish and Berkeley sheer determination not to lose. EPA was noticeably larger across the field, but that was not the size indicator that mattered in this game. EPA was pounding the Berkeley line for at least 15 minutes of the first half only to turn it over in front of the posts and watch Berkeley take it to the house for a 7-0 halftime lead. Eric and I talked at half about how shocked we were that despite all the end to end action and sustained pressure that the score was only 7-0. The score did not reflect the action, offense and sustained pressure. EPA continued to tilt the field in their direction in the second half, but Berkeley made one try saving tackle after another. EPA was across the line for a try if the ball carrier had just fallen to the ground, but they passed in-field to an unsuspecting teammate where it bounced into the arms of a Berkeley player who carried it out to the 22, penalty against EPA for dangerous tackle, kick to touch, pressure relieved. That sequence was a microcosm for the entire game. Both teams scored tries from penalty plays in the second half with EPA converting theirs with 24 minutes remaining to bring the score to within 5 at 12-7, but there would be no more scoring. If you had watched the game and didn’t know or keep track of the score you would have guesses 31-35 or something similar, but try-killing mistakes and great try-saving tackles kept the game low scoring and very close throughout.

Berkeley advances to play Redwood, Tom Zanarini to referee.

Seconds: Berkeley 22 – EAST PALO ALTO 34 Referee: Eric Rauscher
Berkeley did not have enough players to put up a full 15, so EPA lent several and it was decided to play 12 on 12 for two twenty-minute periods.

The first half was all EPA playing a very loose and open form very much like a game of sevens. In the second half Berkeley seemed to have taken note and put up the majority of points in it until an injury to a Berkeley player brought play to a close by general accord. It was a fun game to do with players seeming to have fun with nothing on the line but to enjoy the game.

SAN BRUNO SAINTS 31 – SF Fog 18 Referee: Joe Androvich
SF Fog's first playoff game in team history. Congrulations. Physical game played by both squads. In the 79th minute, SF Fog had the ball in hand, attacking on San Bruno's 5 meter line, down by 6. A try under the post seemed inevitable, but one too many passes led to San Bruno intercept and 100 meter try to seal the victory.

Saints advance to play Marin. Rich Anderson will have that one.


SF GOLDEN GATE SL 57 – Old Mission Beach AC 7 Referee: Davey Ardrey
ARs: Paul Bretz, George O’Neil
Evaluator: Kat Todd-Schwartz
#4: Bruce Carter

SFGG Colts 42 – Seahawks 14 Referee: George O'Neil
AR: Ben Bravo

Seconds: SFGG Colts 37 – Seahawks 5 Referee: Bruce Carter
AR: Ben Bravo
Not only is Golden Gate running the table in the SL, their D2 side is strong and their D2 seconds turn out fifteen fresh faces and even more importantly, thirty fresh legs.

The Seahawks borrowed from their firsts and from the Silverhawks, who had played the Señors earlier on the day.

The game was unusual in most of the penalties going against the team with the preponderance of possession, mostly for over-eagerness in trying to win or retain ball at the breakdown.

OLYMPIC CLUB 27– Sac Lions 7 Referee: Phil Akroyd
Evaluator: David Williamson
The final score does not really indicate how close the game really was.

The Lions took the lead with an early converted try but O Club rallied and leveled eight minutes later. As the home team took the lead for the first time with a second converted try in the first half, the Lions lost their fly-half in the act of conceding a try, through a late, no-wrap hit. 14-7 at half.

I suspected that the Lions would tire in the second half, particularly as they were forced to use three subs in the first half and play a man down for ten minutes. Olympic Club sealed the deal with a second half penalty and converted try in the last minute, but the Lions were relentless in their effort during the entire game and pushed the undefeated league leaders all the way.

There was a little too much chat from O Club and the Lions had to work on their discipline at tackle/rucks, but overall, this was a great game played in good conditions on a wonderful pitch at the Gaelic Athletic Club on Treasure Island. Thanks to Dave Williamson for the input and it was good to get a bit of a social in at a packed SFGG clubhouse afterwards. [See photo]

Seconds: Olympic Club – Sac Lions Referee: Rich Boyer
Assessor: Bryan Porter
The Lions did not have a second side, so O Club played an intra-squad scrimmage.

RENO – Sac Capitals Referee: Jim Crenshaw
According to www.Rugbymag.com, Reno won this game. No score was given, and we have not received any other reports.

San Mateo 8 – BARBARIANS 24 Referee: Joe Leisek
Assistant Referee/Coach: Bryant Byrnes
Touch Judge: Mapa, San Mateo
Aragon High School, San Mateo

On arriving an hour before kickoff, I was happy to see the home team warming up and looking relaxed. The visitors were arriving and soon took the field as well. The Aragon High School football field is a great venue, nestled against the hills in a suburban part of San Mateo near Highway 92. The hosts are in a rebuilding year, with a young roster captained by Humboldt State alum Kanoa Montgomery. The visiting Barbarians possess more experience and currently trail the Olympic Club at the top of the league standings.

The game was played at a brisk pace, with both clubs spending much of the first half running into direct contact near the forwards. The Barbarians proved more adept at tactical kicking, placing several kicks to keep San Mateo under pressure. In fact, the first try of the game was scored when the Barbarians flyhalf popped a high kick ahead that landed near the San Mateo fullback. The ball took a true artificial surface bounce, and landed in the arms of a Barbarians chaser who scampered 40 meters to score.

The first half ended in a score of 7-3 to the visitors.

In the second half, both teams opened up the game a little and ran the ball wide more often. The Barbarians scored two converted tries and a penalty goal to San Mateo's lone try. San Mateo is a team that will be a force as they play together and get more experience playing teams at this level.

Thanks to Bryant for his effective assistance and his constructive coaching comments after the match.

Belated Statement of Appreciation to Three Pelicans
The weekend of Friday and Saturday, April 1-2, found several Pelicans and one Seattle-based referee at the Pacific Coast Women's D1 Collegiate Championships at UC Davis. On Friday, the rain came down in near-horizontal sheets, angled by a cold, howling wind. Assistant Referees Scott Wood and Dave Ellis, and Number Four Official Eugene Baker deserve kudos and thanks for braving the elements. Scott and Eugene came back the next day as ARs. Thanks to all three for their valuable help and company.

Seconds: SAN MATEO 22 – Barbarians 21 Referee: Bryant Byrnes
This was the second act to an intense firsts’ match of Pacific Islander powerhouse clubs. And it was that great oddity in competitive men's games (indeed almost the antithesis)-fun rugby. Fun as in delight, bliss; players smacking the stuffing out of their opponents (lots of big hits!) and then fist bumps to the other team. The crowd loving it; loud friendly jibes from both stands, laughter at miscues, raucous cheers for long runs and scores.

The game was also a rarity in NorCal rugby-true full second sides. Both were mostly young guys trying to move up. The Barbarians controlled the first half with fancy running by the backline; them wingers had wheels. It was 14-3. But the patient San Mateo fellows made some key substitutions at half, and keeping it mostly in the pack earned 2 tries between the posts- and converted.

CHICO 23 – Diablo Gaels 14 Referee: Sam Reagle
Conditions: Cloudy, cool.
After 10 months of touring the country and hooking up with other referee societies, it's great to be back in Pelicanland. As soon as I saw that my next game was in Chico, a fairly scenic 90 miles away, I planned to ride the Goldwing which I haven't even seen since last June. Unfortunately, the rain that was predicted for Sunday was now suppose to arrive around 7pm tonight so I had to abandon the social and leave right after the game. A disappointment as Chico is always a good host.

The sky was completely clouded over and the wind was strong and gusting from south to north. Chico won the toss and chose the wind, a good choice at the time because it kept the Gaels pinned in their half most of the time. I was looking forward to refereeing 2 well-disciplined teams, but the Gaels came out of the gate with a string of unnecessary penalties. Chico made one of their penalty kicks at the 5 minute mark to score the first points of the match. Then, at the 18 minute mark, I binned a Gaels player for repeated infringements of the offside line. Chico capitalized on the man advantage with a converted try at the 19 minute mark and another penalty kick 6 minutes later. The Gaels got on the board shortly after returning to full strength with a converted try to go into halftime with Chico leading 13-7.

Chico managed to score a try against the wind with some clever backline play, but the conversion kick started right, broke about 90 degrees to the left and didn't even reach the goal line. Chico scored another try in a similar fashion about 10 minutes later and again the conversion kick was short and left. With the score 23-7, it looked like Chico was in control, but when the Gaels scored a converted try at the 25 minute mark, they became inspired. About 5 minutes later, 2 players banged heads with a Chico player bleeding and unsubstantiated accusations of intentional head butting. The last 5 minutes saw the game seesawed between good rugby and crap. It finished upbeat after I red-carded the Chico #5 for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Seconds: CHICO 60 –Diablo Gaels 57 Referee: Cary Bertolone
After Sam finished the first side game (Chico won), we played 80 minutes in the wind with the heavy threat of rain that never really came down hard. Chico had extra players and the Diablo Gaels needed players, so several jerseys changed hands and off we went. Six minutes in to the game and there were three tries, but two were penalty tries, one for each team. On both occasions, a player coming up to scoop a ball and score from less than 5 meters was interfered with by a defender playing the man instead of the ball. Incredible! DV took the lead with many of their first side players still in the game and were up 43-27 at the half. They finally got tired and Chico kept coming, taking the lead late in the game for a final score victory 60-57. On to the Madison Bear with Brock and Dan Lacko and the wig-wearing players!

FRESNO over Arroyo Grande by forfeit
Referee: James Hinkin
Note: after talking to AG on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday I was assured that they would travel. And they did... sort of. They showed up with 10 people so I ended up with a game but not a terribly competitive one.

Scrimmage match:
FRESNO 72 - Arroyo Grande 5 Referee: James Hinkin
I arrived in Fresno on a blustery day to see the Fresno St v UCSC game in progress and R. Scott Wood manfully gliding around the field shouting at collegians; at times regretfully blowing his whistle to punish and admonish errant play while joyfully tootling loudly to reward positive, scoring play. With that performance to aspire to I confidently looked up the Fresno captain and the AG captain only to find that AG only traveled with 10 players. Fresno generously offered to fill out the remainder of the team so a game was on. Fresno are gearing up for playoffs and started their strongest side against a determined mix of AG veterans and Fresno subs. The game started with a little back and forth with AG getting most of the back and Fresno netting most of the forth. Eventually after 5 minutes Fresno was able to break through for the try. The game settled into this patters with Fresno dominating territory and possession until they scored. AG defended strongly at times and countered occasionally but the combination of unknown teammates on the AG side and a heavily accented 8-9-10 controlling triumvirate on the Fresno side left little doubt as to the outcome. Fresno scored 9 tries and converted 4 to go in at the break leading 53-0.

The second half was more balanced mainly due to substitution of key players by Fresno (AG not having much in the way of subs available) but also due to the insertion of (a late arriving?) new #10 for AG. Fresno still controlled the match but more errors crept in as inexperienced players tried to do too much or too little. The AG #10 was able to break the Fresno defense several times but could not quite finish as the cover caught up and support was lacking. AG was able to finally get a consolation try late on but had already given up another 4 tries by that point. Final score Fresno 72 - Arroyo Grande 5

Fresno looks to be dangerous in the playoff as they have solid leadership in the key positions. They lack experience in other areas, noticed when some silly penalties were given away and when once in each half a mark was not given because it was called for by several vets but was not actually called for by the catcher of the ball. If they can minimize those mistakes they will do well.

SANTA ROSA 86 – Stanislaus 0 Referee: John Coppinger
Stanislaus arrived in Santa Rosa with 14 players (having had a number of players send in their regrets late Friday night) and gamely battled a full strength Santa Rosa squad, which was looking forward to a critical battle with Fresno this week. Stanislaus played hard, but the match was essentially an opposed workout for Rosa as they ran out 86-0 winners.

Santa Rosa seconds 15 – SANTA ROSA JC 26 Ref: Coppinger
Santa Rosa JC took on Santa Rosa B in the second match and it was a more competitive match with the JC edging Rosa 26-15.

The after match trip to the Zoo bar is worth the trip to Santa Rosa.

VACAVILLE 45 – BA Baracus 8 Referee: John Pohlman
TJ's David and Nathan and some other guys
Vacaville hosted Baracus in what I thought might be blowout game in Baracus's favor. I got an e-mail from Vacaville coach Chris Motes on Tuesday confirming the game and stating they would play, but had some injuries and job commitments and may have only 13 or so players.

I was pleasantly surprised to see 20 plus Vacaville players warming up when I arrived at noon. Baracus was fielding two sides, their seconds playing USF.

When I did my pre-game chat I recognized a couple of UC Davis's players wearing Vacaville jerseys. Davis's season is over, so I thought it was ok to join another team.

Baracus needed this game to stay in the running for the playoffs.

Baracus won the toss and received the ball.

This was a very enjoyable game to referee. Both teams had lots of experience and were contesting every possession. The game was back and forth early.

Vacaville scored four trys in the first half. Mostly with their backs. Captain Matt Heafey at #10 was receiving consistent good passes from the ex UC Davis scrum half. (The Davis/Vacaville scrumhalf was my player of the game). This allowed the Vacaville backs led by the Hansen brothers to run wild. The Vacaville backs simply had the ability to finish today. Once in space they linked some outstanding trys together.

After the second try Baracus realized how dangerous Vacaville was going to be. They tried to keep the ball in their forwards, but a couple of the ex Davis forwards were too quick to the breakdown, poaching balls. Then out to backs with space and speed to finish.

Baracus made a couple of player changes and came out of half time energized.

A quick turnover for another long try by the Hansens shook their confidence.

Tempers started to run high when a Baracus player made a high tackle, was then cleaned out of the ruck by the Vacaville prop. A mini scuffle took place with the Baracus player throwing a punch. Red card.

As usual Baracus scored a try a man down to give them a lift. A Vacaville player flew into a tackle without a wrap. Yellow card.

After that the game kept its intensity, but no more dangerous stuff.

Final Vacaville 45 Baracus 8

After the game a Baracus official called the Vacaville coach and myself together and asked how they could protest the UC Davis players joining Vacaville. I thought that if the UC Davis players were CIPP'd and their season over at university and they had officially joined the Vacaville team they could be allowed to play. But that was a up to the league to decide.
So Baracus may eventually win this game.
I guess it goes to show how just a couple of good players can really change a team on the border of contending.

[Editor’s Note: USA Rugby allows players to play in a higher division within the same year once the competitive season for their league has ended. College players may matriculate to club or super league for the duration (unless the SL has a regulation to the contrary – your editor is not certain on this point).

[This also applies to high school players, with waivers required if they are under 19.

[They have to CIPP with the new club and cannot of course play ‘back down’ in the same competitive season, which for XVs runs September 1 to August 31.

[Readers of Hail, Pelicus! happen to have an editor who sits on the Rugby Committee of USA Rugby, which reviews and approves such policies.]

FRESNO STATE 34 – UC Santa Cruz 5 Referee: Scott Wood
Location: Fresno Regional Sports Park
Santa Cruz did not travel well and borrowed some players from Fresno.

Fresno started slowly, feeling out the opposition but unable to suck in the defense. Fresno led at the end of the half 12-0.

UC Santa Cruz lost one player to the bin in the first half. Apparently thinking they performed well down a player (which, in a relative sense, they did) another player found his way to the bin two minutes into the second half. Fresno capitalized on the overlap and maneuvered the ball to the fast wings. By "fast" I mean Chuck Yeager fast. The visitors were able to score a try for honor.


Saturday, April 3, Varsity
Piedmont International Touring Side 5 – SFGG 33 Referee: John Coppinger
On Piedmont's Witter Field Saturday night, SF/GG ran by PITS 33-5 in the varsity match. SF/GG was better in support and at the breakdown.

In the Frosh/Soph match that followed, it was more of the same and SF/GG ran out 42-10 winners.

In both matches, PITS expended much too much time and energy trying to assist the referee.

Marin Highlanders – Montgomery CANCELED
Rich Anderson:
Not a good Saturday when I went from a good D1 Men's match to a High School match to mowing the lawn...

ELSIE ALLEN 67 – Rancho/Windsor 12 Referee: Cary Bertolone
Elsie took a big lead into the half with better ball control and some fast backs, leading 40-5, but Rancho/Windsor didn't quit, scoring a converted try early in the second half. Elsie turned it back on towards the end with three more tries, winning going away 67-12.

Elsie Allen 17 –FAIRFIELD PREP of Conn. 31 Referee: Tom Zanarini

Monday, April 12:
Bishop O’Dowd 5 – BELLARMINE 20 Referee: Eric Rauscher
Under the lights at Bishop O’Dowd on Monday nights is becoming a great tradition. Both the boys and girls play back to back games that are well-attended and look to be great start for rugby there. Bellarmine showed up with enough players to field a team with a few to spare, but it was all they needed. To a casual observer, they seemed to be about 10-20 lbs larger on average the O’Dowd players. The first half ended in a 5/5 tie, but Bellarmine was able to pull away in the second half. Both teams played with good skill and knowledge of the game. I have seen marked improvement in O’Dowd’s side from the first games this year and things should keep building for their program. Thanks to both teams for an interesting game.

Real Clubhouse
Phil Akroyd and David Williamson discuss Phil’s game in the foreground while rugby tradition is observed in the background.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Wednesday, April 07, 2010




This is an appeal to all possible referees to be available the weekend of April 24-25.

At present we have 21 referees listed as available. We also have 22 games scheduled AND the Pacific Coast High School Invitational that weekend. (Super league, men’s D1 and D2 are still in-season. Men’s D3 and two tiers of high school playoffs will also be occurring.)

The tournament will be played on four pitches, which requires at least a dozen referees not to have anyone working one game on, one game off.


And we’ll do what we can to get some referee coaches to the Invitational.

Rich Boyer went to New York and sends back this report:

I arrived Thursday to be met at the airport by Jack Rosenhammer. He is matriculating at St. John's so Friday was a free day for me. Went to the Statue of Liberty and toured Wall Street. Pat Wickman and Jack took me to a nice Czech restaurant.

First game of the tournament was at 8:00 Sat. morning. The temperature was a balmy 35 degrees and it never reached 45 degrees during the day despite abundant sunshine.

First game was NY women’s' against Providence. NY has a few woman Eagles, notably the wing, who scored a hat trick of tries. Providence was game but could not counter NY's solid scrum and pick and drive. NY 29-5.

This tournament included women’s teams, college teams, club teams and old boys. And the old boys were truly "old" boys. Nonetheless, they played decent rugby.

Second game was between Wilkes Barre and Rochester. Rochester had the better pack and a solid 8-man replaced ref/rugger Randall Johnson at halftime to lead his team to victory, 26-5.

Third and final game was the semifinal between Beantown Women and the Lions, a local club. Beantown has a few Eagles of their own. The played awesome rugby with great rolling mauls, pick and goes and awesome backline moves (1 switch 2 switch 8 off a set scrum). The Beantown flyhalf, light in stature, had great field vision and put her runners into space time and again. Beantown 49-0.

Everyone at this tournament was great; players, fans, refs, administrators. This ref heard not a word from the sidelines all day: they were quiet as church mice. Although vocal in support of their respective teams, players, fans and coaches alike did not react in any way to any call made by the ref. What a pleasure!

Later that evening young Jack received a phone call from Army admissions. It seems he had applied, for the third time, to get an Army scholarship. Finally, on Saturday night, he realized his dream and was accepted. A great weekend for him!

Anna McMahan is nearing the end of her second year of medical school in Boston:

I felt nostalgic for a Hail Pelicus write up, and since Dave Williamson watched my match this weekend, I thought I'd send you a match report from the east coast just for old times sake. Dave watched my first match ever in NorCal when I picked up the whistle for Stanford 10's, so it felt a little like things had come full circle when I found out he was going to watch my match this weekend. I had the very good fortune of having his coaching advice for several of my matches during my year in NorCal, and I am a undoubtedly a better ref for his efforts.


BEANTOWN 93 – Boston 0 Referee: Anna McMahan

The score really sums up this one-sided affair played in absolutely beautiful weather on the turf fields at Madison Park HS. Aside from the annoying lines and lack of flags, the field created a fast running surface and allowed for good ball movement in this cross-town rival friendly match.

The first half was slightly less one-sided as Beantown had some ball handling errors and had a hard time maintaining continuity. Boston had a bit of possession, but couldn't break through Beantown's stiffling defense. Beantown dominated at the breakdown and had go forward ball to work with the whole game. First half tries at 5, 19, 28, 34, and 0 distributed evenly between backs and forwards.

The second half became a runaway game, as both sides made some switches. Beantown had pretty much all of the possession, including taking most of Boston's scrums and some of their line outs. 10 tries were scored in the half mostly through the backs as Beantown worked out some of their handling issues and had great continuity and support running. Boston. never gave up and worked hard to contest at every breakdown, but couldn't contain Beantown's runners. A special reward for the hard work of Beantown's pack came at 14 minutes into the second half when they scored a push-over try from a scrum taken against the head.

Thanks to Liz and Kristin for captaining, and to both teams for a wonderfully low penalty count. Thanks also to Dave Williamson for taking some of his time on the east coast to watch a former Pelican and give helpful feedback as always.


WOMEN’S D1 in Davis:
ARs: Scott Wood; Dave Ellis (Friday), Eugene Baker (Saturday)

STANFORD 19 – Cougar Rugby 12 Referee: Joe Leisek

UC DAVIS 17 – California 15 Referee: Tobin Ropes
Evaluator: Mike Malone

Third Place:
COUGAR Rugby – California Referee: Joe Leisek

UC Davis 10 – STANFORD 19 Referee: Tobin Ropes

Stanford, UC Davis and BYU all advance to the nationals. Stanford and UCD will be at UC Santa Barbara April 17-18.

MEN’S D1 at St. Mary's:
ARs: Preston Gordon, John Pohlman

ST. MARY’S 53 – Oregon State 12 Referee: Mark Ormsby
Evaluators: Dixon Smith, Bernie Brown

Chico State 11 – UC DAVIS 28 Referee: Joe Androvich

Third Place:
Oregon State – CHICO STATE Referee: Mark Ormsby

ST. MARY’S 41 – UC Davis 19 Referee: Joe Androvich

St. Mary’s advances to the sweet sixteen at UC Santa Barbara April 16-17.

MEN’S D2 at Maritime Academy:
ARs: Mike King; Eric Rauscher (Friday), Pat King (Saturday)

MARITIME ACADEMY – Western Oregon Referee: Tom Zanarini

SANTA CLARA – Snow College in Overtime Referee: Paul Bretz

Third Place:
WESTERN OREGON – Snow College Referee: Tom Zanarini

CMA 34 – Santa Clara 7 Referee: Paul Bretz

The Maritime Academy, Santa Clara and Western Oregon all move on the nationals, to be played in Sanford, Fla, in two weeks.


Reno forfeit to SAN MATEO Referee: Phil Akroyd
Reno 7 – San Mateo 23. No, not the half time score but the number of players from each team present at kick-off time.

How a home team cannot field a squad is beyond me. What is even more annoying is that they cannot let the refs or away teams know the situation, when they only had four people at practice on Tuesday night and seven people on Thursday night. It is really San Mateo who got screwed on this as they drove up on Friday night, through blizzards and chain controls, only to play a 60 minute scrimmage.

Scrimmage Final Score:. Reno 54 – SAN MATEO 67
So we kicked off forty minutes late with thirteen on thirteen, most of whom were SM guys. It was fun for what it was, and I got some altitude sprinting, in a very fun, well mannered game. It was 33 – 38 at half and the scores went back and forth all of the game. Not that it matters, as it was a complete waste of time and a thoroughly annoying day for everyone.

Well done San Mateo, thanks to Jim Crenshaw for driving and freezing his ass off on the touchline. Maybe I’ll get a competitive game next week.

Shasta 18 – EPA U23, 34 Referee: Dave Ellis
After spending the previous afternoon shivering on the touchline in driving wind and rain at the PCRFU D1 Women's Collegiate Playoffs in Davis, it felt good to dry out the cleats and get back on the field in near perfect rugby weather in beautiful Shasta County. The game was to be Shasta's last of the season, while EPA were readying themselves for next week's D3 playoff game against Berkeley. EPA drew first blood with an early converted try in the second minute of play following a pair of quick penalties against Shasta. Shasta responded quickly with a couple of penalty kicks, and by the 9th minute the score was 7-6 and it was game on! A lull in the scoring ensued for a while as both teams battled to gain the upper hand, but handling miscues and hard nosed defense on both sides kept the score close. It was the EPA forward's ability to keep the ball alive after the tackle and run hard and straight that finally broke the deadlock, and they were ably assisted by their impressive outside center who scored the final try of the half to take the score to 17-6.

The second half was almost a mirror image of the first, with EPA scoring early to further extend their lead. Shasta would not quit, however, and brought themselves back into the game with an exhilarating try by their outside center in which he covered almost two thirds the length of the field, breaking tackles along the way. The fact that he seemed to be one of the smaller players on the field made it all the more impressive. The score seemed to energize the entire Shasta team, and they battled their way back to within four points with seven minutes to play. Sensing an upset in the making, EPA put their foot on the gas and began to spin the ball quickly to their outside backs, where they found plenty of space to run. A tiring Shasta team proved unable to defend this tactic, and EPA ended with two tries in the last five minutes to finish the game with style. All in all an excellent, enjoyable game to have been a part of. The afternoon ended with class on the part of EPA, who delighted the spectators on hand when they formed a line and, in a choreographed move, thanked the home crowd. The spirit of rugby at its best!

SF Fog women 29 – SEQUOIAS 43 Referee: Eric Rauscher
Assessor: Bryan Porter
Treasure Island, Job Corps field Overcast and cool
I arrived at 11:30 am to allow for plenty of time before the friendly between these two teams. When I arrived only one Fog player was there. Players gradually showed up until Fog had a full team. At 12:15 still no Sequoias. By about 1pm, six Sequoias were there with no prospects of more to arrive.

It was decided to have Fog lend players to Sequoia and play 10's. We started with two 20 minute periods and played an additional ten.

The first period saw alot of points, 17 on both sides. That equals way more than a point a minute. After that Sequoia piled on the points but the play was still pretty close. Although it was not a full-on game it was still an enjoyable afternoon. Many thanks to Bryan who showed up to observe me, and stuck around to give pointers.


SAN MATEO/EPA/HAYWARD 36 – Napier HS of NZ 29 Referee: Preston Gordon
Steuber field at Stanford
Saturday at 1900
ARs: Bruce Carter, Sandy Robertson

Refereeing on this field is a pleasure. Refereeing on this field with 2 qualified ARs using the radios is more so. Doing that for a good match, where the players all know the game and it's an even contest, is even better!

The Napier boys were on an extended tour of the west coast, and were looking for some serious opposition. I believe they were in BC before coming to the Bay Area, have games with Jesuit and the Santa Barbara Academy scheduled, and would be stopping in Hawaii for another game before heading home. For this event, the best U19 players from the peninsula & south bay teams gathered about 3 hours beforehand to get ready for the challenge. By the time I arrived at 1715, the locals were well into running back/forward drills. The Kiwis appeared on schedule and we had a pretty good crowd (maybe 200) on hand to see this game, played under the lights. Unfortunately the scoreboard was out of service (field construction) but other than that everything was perfect. So was the visitors' Hakka before the game.

The game did not disappoint either. The locals, wearing EPA shirts, kicked off to the north. The Kiwis counterattacked, moving the ball inside the 22, and shortly turned the ball over in a tackle. The locals immediately broke to the outside, going almost the whole length of the field for the opening try - less than 2 minutes in. Soon after, Napier answered with a well-worked try of their own. This was the theme of the entire game, with tries coming out of nowhere and lots of multi-phase attacking play. The scoreline stayed close throughout, and was 22-12 to the locals at the half (4 tries to 2). Both sides could have used the points from the missed conversions.

Shortly after halftime one of the locals went to the bin after being found not releasing the tackled player after multiple warnings for this sort of team infringement. This was a perfect use for the radios - I saw the man on the floor not releasing, played the advantage, and decided he'd earned a yellow card, but could not get his number since there were others mixed up in the tackle.

Stopping the Napier attack to issue the card may have been technically correct, but would have killed the continuity of the game and their opportunity to earn a try on their own. What to do? Ask the AR to get the number of the offender, then pivot and take off for the next breakdown. A few steps later, Bruce tells me "White 17" - perfect, we play on and Napier gets the try. Before the kicker lines up the conversion, I call the White captain and #17 over, and issue the card. Apparently that was enough to keep their behavior in line at the tackle area, because it was no longer a problem.

Napier took advantage of the mismatch in numbers, scoring another try, and the game continued at a frenetic tempo right until the final whistle. Napier spent the last few minutes attacking the locals' goal line, looking for the equalizer, but ultimately were denied a minute or two after time had expired. However, Napier had outscored the locals in the second half, 17-14 (3 tries to 2).

As I mentioned earlier, this game was a real pleasure to referee. Thanks to Bruce and Sandy for coming out to help on the touchline. And, of course, good luck to the boys from Napier in their remaining tour matches.

LAMORINDA 49 – Marin Lions 12 Referee: Bruce Carter
This was a league game prior to both teams leaving for spring-break tours: Lamo to British Columbia and the Lions to New Zealand.

With Friday’s rain at St. Mary’s and the need to preserve the pitch for on-going Pacific Coast playoffs, Lamorinda could not ‘borrow’ Pat Vincent Field as they have been doing but instead moved to nearby Campolindo HS.

Lamo converted seven trys; many of them orchestrated or converted by #10 Wes Van Tonder. Their #8, who has won a scholarship to play football at San Jose State, showed why a D1 college program would want him, running unstoppably up the middle.

The Lions seemed to have a blind spot on the right side of their defense, where Lamo’s left wing found the passing lane on several occasions.

MARIN HIGHLANDERS 27 – Santa Rosa 12 Referee: Bruce Bernstein
Field moved because of rain to Sir Francis Drake HS in San Anselmo--nice artificial turf, but no 5 meter lines for lineouts & great weather (65 degrees) & very good fan support.

The scrums were pretty even except Marin's hooker stealing at least 5 SR hooks; but Marin's back were very good with their ball & their flyhalf & centers either set up or scored their 5 tries.

The two try-of-the-matches went to Rosa's fullback (who looked & played like Ivan from Hayward), who zigzagged in to score; & their other captain/flanker who willed his way in from about 15 meters out.

Also Rosa showed a lot of heart for about 10-15 minutes in the second half to make the match pretty respectable against a quality playoff-bound Marin team.

PS--the BBQ'd oysters were great at Iron Springs Brew Pub down the road in Fairfax & the wine at Wellington's (English Wine Bar) on the water in Sausalito didn't suck--I don't think anything does in Marin!

JESUIT 45 – Dixon 5 Referee: Phil Akroyd
Dixon came out flat and basically gave the game away in the first twenty minutes. After that, the visitors held Jesuit to a total of 14 net points for the remainder of the game. Two yellow cards also slowed Jesuit – one for persistent offences on the ground and one for a loose fist, spotted by A/R Crenshaw.


Along with Dixon Smith, I was the evaluator at the playoff games held at St Mary’s College April 2 and 3. Many thanks to Dixon Smith. It was also good to meet up with Bryan Porter again. Thank yous to the referees Joe Androvich (Northern California) and Mark Ormsby (Utah). Also thank yous to the ARs John Pohlman and Preston Gordon as well as the other referees who readily stepped in as ARs, plus Giles Wilson who was the Match Commissioner/#4 on Friday.

A very special thank you to John and Eileen Pohlman who were such gracious hosts during my and Mark Ormsby's stay.

Bernie Brown


Received April 1:
“I realize that HP already went out, but I wanted to report that the Seahawks sent up their B-side to make up for the Harlots' lack thereof. The ‘Hawks B's were tired of getting screwed out of matches (what with Vacaville the previous week and Arroyo's complete forfeit), so we were able to sort out a quality 80 minute match in SF. Even though he had spent most of the A side match at tighthead prop, Chris Labozzetta was kind enough to step in as unofficial referee. The result: Baracus B: 50, SJ Seahawks B: 15

“Actually, now that I look, I see no report was received for the previous week either. That was another quality 80 minute match and I believe we even had a real ref, although I didn't recognize him. Older fellow. He also had a very suspect cadence that went something like "crouch and hold...touch pause...umm....engage!" That changed a lot during the match, though the other front row and I kind of gave up on trying to correct him. Anyway, that result was Baracus B: 38, Chico B: 20.

“Cheers and Long Live Div2 B-side Matches,

A Front Row
Bryan Arciero, Kat Todd-Schwartz and Aruna Ranaweera celebrate the day at the SFGG clubhouse March 27.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris