Thursday, March 31, 2011




We need a blower for a Sunday game, April 10, University of Nevada men hosting Fresno State. Let us know.


There have been a number of changes for April 2’s assignments, in large part necessitated by the putting off of the D3 quarter-finals for a week.

Please double-check your assignment on the website on Friday. Write for confirmation if you are uncertain.


The last regular-season meeting of the NCRFU will take place on Wednesday, April 9, at the SF/Golden Gate clubhouse from 7 till 9.

Please make every effort to attend. We will be discussing open play and restarts.

The playoff season approaches. We’ll need ARs for the next two months, as well as referees of course.


SANTA ROSA JC 53 – Univ. of Washington 0 Referee: Cary Bertolone
Santa Rosa did not provide a very warm welcome to the touring University of Washington Rugby Club. Not only did a steady downpour greet them for the 4:00 PM match, but so did a larger than expected rugby club from a Junior College. I think they were surprised at how good the SRJC team is as the home team powered in 4 tries for a 24-0 halftime lead and followed up with 5 more in the second half for the final 53-0 score. The For Pete's Sake field held up through the heavy rains, but it was still slick and sloppy.

Sacramento State – Univ. of Washington Referee: Jim Crenshaw
No report received.

California women 17 – UC DAVIS 32 Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
55F and cloudy at the Gilman artificial turf in Berkeley. Regulation scrimmage between two teams bound for Pacific Coast playoffs. Cal had the edge in lineouts and mauls, but Davis was stronger at the breakdown and in open field. Cal led 12-10 at half, but Davis controlled possession in the second half to finish ahead, 6 tries to 3.

The UPS Bowl?
MARITIME ACADEMY 15 - San Jose St 7 Referee: James Hinkin
A wet, muddy night in Vallejo saw wet, muddy rugby. By the end of the game brown was playing brown but brown won because brown took advantage of the mistakes brown made in brown’s end. Brown defended well but brown was able to break brown’s line. Brown won the day.

SFGG SL 32 – Utah Warriors 8 Referee: Paul Bretz
ARs: Lois Bukowski, Bruce Carter
#4: Jim Marsh; Scoreboard operator: Stephanie Bruce
Evaluator: Kat Todd-Schwartz

Seconds: SFGG Colts – Marin RAINED OUT

Sac Capitals – EPA Razorbacks Referee: Jim Crenshaw
No report received.

Seconds: Sac Capitals – EPA Razorbacks Referee: Jordan Bruno
No report received.

SACRAMENTO LIONS 59 – Barbarians 26 Referee: Scott Wood
AR: Eugene Baker; TJ: Various Lions players
Location: Hagginwood Park, Sacramento
The Lions were able to secure use of a brand new artificial turf field for this match. Based on the park's availability, they got the field from 4 pm to 8 pm. Duct tape was used to extend the width of the playing area but fencing constrained the length. While the dimensions did not exceed the maximum allowed by the Plan, the pitch was rectangular.

Barbarians travelled short and both matches involved mostly the same players. The Lions have enough numbers to support two sides. The B Side match started at 4 pm (refereed by Eugene Baker) with the first XV slated for 5:30. Unfortunately, the clouds parted around 3:30 pm and we were left with sunny skies.

Participating in back-to-back matches takes a toll and it showed in the first half. The Barbarians were able to defend the middle of the pitch but the Lions managed to exploit the sidelines. Seven tries were scored to none in the first half. 42-0.

A Tale of Two Halves or How Reserves Spend Time When Put in the Game: The Barbarians fared much better in the second half as the Lions committed penalties at the tackle/ruck phases. The host's reserves missed tackles and would occasionally fall victim to two- and three-step misdirection that opened up gaps for the visitors to exploit. The Barbarians won the second half four tries to two but the damage was already done.

This was a very fast and enjoyable game played in good spirits. Thanks to both teams for a fun afternoon and to Eugene Baker for running touch.

Seconds: Sac Lions 12 – BARBARIANS 27 Referee: Eugene Baker
Cleanly played match with some backline speed on both sides. Wish the Barbos had more bodies; they were gassed during the "A" side match, which was played after this one.

EPA Bulldogs 17 – OLYMPIC CLUB 34 Referee: Pete Smith
AR: Bruce Ricard

Seconds: EPA Bulldogs 19 – OLYMPIC CLUB 40 Referee: Bruce Ricard
Both teams were pretty tired, and didn't have that many players to play a second game, so we played halves of 25 minutes.

First half was completely dominated by the Olympic club, more realistic, and helped by the many infringements of the Bulldogs. They scored 4 tries against one, leading 26 - 5 at the break.

The second half was much more interesting, both teams were really close, and scored each 2 tries (14 - 14).

SANTA ROSA 41 - Diablo 8 Referee: Tom Zanarini
An exceptionally muddy day at For Pete's Sake Field. The heavy rains held off for the matches, which was nice. Lots of attacking despite the conditions. Well played by both sides.

Seconds: Santa Rosa 0 Diablo 0 Ref: Zanarini
Snake eyes. I'm buying.

SEAHAWKS 27 – Berkeley 3 Referee: Bruce Ricard
The first half was pretty balanced. Nothing scored during the first part of the game, the Seahawks scored two unconverted tries at the 18th and 36th minutes. Berkeley made a penalty kick at the 39th, and this half ended on 10 - 3.

The second half was very different, San Jose scored 3 tries (one converted), and Berkeley didn't score anything.

FRESNO 30 – BA Baracus 10 Referee: Dan Wilson
With the wild weather and intense storms that had been hitting the Central Valley as well as the game being played at a farmer’s soccer field in the city of Lemoore, I was envisioning a complete mud pit of a game. Surprisingly, the field was in fantastic condition, with hardly any mud whatsoever. The best part was that it did not rain at all during the game!

Baracus had traveled the 3-hour drive with good numbers (more than 30 players). The game started off with both teams trying to feel out each other by crashing off of the rucks but not really spinning it past the centers for the first 10 minutes. Fresno finally scored the first try (unconverted) at the 14th minute when they were able to get their backs involved by spinning it fully across the pitch. Baracus pressured Fresno back with an unconverted try of their own at the 18th minute.

Baracus seemed to keep Fresno off their game for most of the first half by effective counter rucking and scraping for the ball at every turn. Also, Baracus' scrum also seemed to fluster Fresno's scrum no matter whose put in it was. Each team was able to score another try (Fresno converted theirs) and Fresno added a penalty kick prior to half, but going into the break, it seemed to be either team's game. Half-time score: Fresno 15, Baracus 10.

In the second half, Fresno seemed to control their scrums more effectively and attacked more with their compliment of backs. Utilizing the width of the field allowed Fresno to penetrate the defensive lines on a more regular basis, while Baracus still controlled the rucks by effective counter rucking. Fresno was able to touch down two more tries (one converted) and another penalty kick while keeping Baracus primarily out of their 22 zone. Final score: Fresno 30, Baracus 10.

Seconds: Fresno 17 – BA BARACUS 27 Referee: Bill Long
It was my first club match so I was a little anxious, both Dan Wilson and Jeff Jury stayed to help coach me. The first half was a fairly even game I believe BA scored first then Fresno twice then BA and finally with about 3 min remaining BA took a penalty kick to end the half in the lead. The players were extremely chatty with the BA a Captain doing a slightly better job of bringing the complaints from his team to me whilst Fresno players were a little more vocal with less control by the captain. The second half had more captain control although, there was an altercation between two for which I spoke to the captains and they settled the issue well. There were no further problems between players away from the ball after that. Fresno and BA went back and forth with no really remarkable play in the second half, BA seemed to scrum slightly better and was exceedingly better at the lineouts. Fresno had no answer for the extra try and conversion in the second half and ended up short.

CHICO 19 - 15 Vacaville Referee: Chris Tucker
Good news is that the gophers at the old Chico pitch have all drowned. Bad news is the holes are still there. The ball did not move particularly fast, except forward off the players’ cold, wet hands. The war of attrition was won by Chico in the last 10 mins with a come-from-behind try.

Reno Academy – Colusa CANCELED

RENO ZEPHYRS 12 – Shasta 7 Referee: Blake Crawley
On a very windy but otherwise lovely day in Fernley, NV, the Reno Zephyrs ground out a 12-7 victory over an evenly matched Shasta side. All the tries were scored in the first half. The most impressive play of the match was the Shasta try conversion at a tough angle and against a stiff wind. The ball was fluttering and dancing about in a life of its own but had enough steam to barely make it over the cross bar. Shasta began the second half with the wind to their backs but it proved a disadvantage as several promising kicks went into touch in goal, costing the visitors dearly.

Vallejo – Humboldt RAINED OUT

MENDOCINO 13 – Redwood 12 Referee: Bjorn Stumer
This could have been a pretty good match, albeit played in a mud bath, but was marred by indiscipline and back chat to the referee. Mendocino soon got the message and capitalized on Redwood's continued indiscipline to turn a halftime deficit into a one point advantage. As Redwood could not be controlled, and as their frustration was turning dangerous for the opposing team, and as one of their ejected player refused to leave the playing enclosure as required by the Safety Protocol, your referee called the match with 10 minutes to go and went home. This gave Mendocino a 1 point victory which way well have been overcome by Redwood had their demeanor and discipline allowed the game to continue.

SAMOA UNITED over Monterey by forfeit

Saints – Arroyo Grande Referee: Liz Palmer

Paso Robles 5 - SAN FRANCISCO FOG 27 Referee: Jen Tetler
A would-be-beautiful-if-it-weren't-raining-so-hard drive down to Paso Robles ended at an actually beautiful pitch in the middle of wine country.

It was probably the first rugby game in history to start EARLY since everyone was ready to go 5 minutes before 1pm, or maybe they just wanted to get warm and out of the rain sooner.

Paso Robles won the toss and elected to start the game defending into the wind, which was pretty strong. That might have been a bit of a detriment, since the Fog used their first half wind advantage well, starting the scoring with a penalty kick about 5 minutes in. There was lots of mauling and lots of kicking in the game.

The Fog scored a couple of their 4 tries in the first half off of some nice running lines by the backs, and the others from some strong forwards mauls off of a lineout. Two of those tries converted, leaving the first half score at 27-0.

Paso Robles came out hard in the second half, hoping to finally use the wind to their advantage. The only try of the second half came from a ball that flew out of a ruck and was picked up by a Paso Robles player who ran it all the way to the try zone.

Both teams started to get a little mouthy at the end, but the excellent wine tasting nearby made up for that.

Stanislaus 9 –SOUTH VALLEY 49 Referee: John Coppinger
South Valley traveled to Turlock to play Stanislaus.

The match was played on one of series of three retention basins built to provide storm water drainage for a housing development.

Surprisingly, although we have been pounded by rain and one of the retention basins was full of water, the pitch was firm under foot and held up nicely despite persistent heavy rain throughout the second half.

South Valley was simply too big, fast, powerful, and organized for Stanislaus, but Stanislaus was game and battled hard until the end and then wanted to play an added 10 minutes to prepare for the playoffs.

ST. MARY’S 44 – Claremont 0 Referee: George O'Neil
ARs: Aruna Ranaweera, John Fouts
#4: Rob Hendrickson
Evaluator: Dixon Smith

Saint Mary's College 2nd/3rd XV 20 – SAN MATEO 1ST/2ND XV 45
Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
50F on a muddy SMC field with intermittent rain; 40 minute-halves, running time. San Mateo led 21-10 at half and tallied a total of 7 tries to 4. San Mateo earned 4 yellow cards, all related to repeated team offside; the last two yellows were elevated to red according to a rarely invoked detail of law 10.3(b).

UC Davis 5 – UCLA 14 Referee: Leah Berard
ARs: James Hinkin, Ray Schwartz
#4: Ron Decausemaker
Evaluator: Mike Malone

Seconds: UC Davis – UCLA RAINED OUT

Nevada – Fresno State TO BE RESCHEDULED

SIERRA JC over U. of San Francisco by forfeit

Humboldt Girls U19 5 – Berkeley 5 Referee: Eric Rauscher
This was indeed the wettest field I have ever been on. Huge swathes of 2/3 inch deep water, but no rain until the end of the match.

The teams were evenly matched as is reflected by the score. Neither team scored until the second half. But I also saw something in the second half that impressed me greatly. As I was setting the 125th scrum, one of the locks noticed that her opponents boot was untied. She knelt down in the mud, put the girls' boot on her leg and proceeded to tie her boot for her. This exact same thing happened a little while later, but reversed. I was staggered by that level of sportsmanship. Kudos to both teams

Humboldt State 0 –SANTA ROSA JC 29 Referee: Eric Rauscher
So Bonnie and I took a road trip North. You make a river crossing at least 15 times and drive through some of the loveliest landscape that California has to offer. We drove up Friday almost all the way through rain. It rained all night. Ate breakfast and the rain stopped. Miracle! Got to the pitch at 10am to do a girls game.

The pitch is basically at sea level and it had been raining for a week. After the girls game it was a quagmire. As for the game, I have done Humboldt for the last two years and was looking forward to doing them again They have some fine players on their team, but just weren't able to handle Santa Rosa's cohesiveness as a team. Humboldt was able to make line breaks, but were a bit slow in support and were never able to really sting together enough phases to get traction, even in the mud. By the end of the game, most everybody was covered with a fine layer of the field. I would have liked to have hung around to socialize a bit after the game, but we had to be back home that evening.

Bertolone, King, Levitan, Ulibarri, Pohlman, Carter

Report by Cary Bertolone:
I only had one game; it was between San Jose Silverhawks vs the PAXOs. As in most of the games I saw, knock-ons dominated the game with the rain adding to the issue of nearly cold dead appendages (hands/fingers) being unable to catch the slippery thing. I should have brought whistles for the Silverhawks as most of them were more concerned about the calls than the rugby. PAXOs beat the Silverhawks 15-5. The PAXOs thought I reffed a great game. The Silverhawks thought otherwise.

After everyone played 3 games each, and most everyone still having to play two games more, and most everyone having already had their fill of rugby, rain and mud, tournament organizers tallied up the records and found Old Southwest tied with the Bald Eagles with 2 wins and a tie each (tied each other). Tournament organizers gave first place to Southwest because they traveled further, and the Bald Eagles received second place medals and the Up an Under Catering service promptly tapped the keg, which was thoroughly drained in record time.

Report by John Pohlman:
Stanford is hosting the Bay Area Senior Games this week with rugby being the opening competition.

This is an over 50's competition with close to 2,000 athletes competing in numerous sports. Many sports competitions were postponed due to rain...but as we know if they let us play rugby, rugby will be played.

Five teams converged at the Stanford Rugby Complex this past Saturday. Ages 50-76. A record day for rain. Even Stanford's pitch could not keep up with the downpour. Everyone was soaked.

Teams competing were Old Southwest, Hastings, Silverhawks, Bald Eagles and host PAXO/Back Bay.

Frank Merrill was the president in charge of rugby. Great job Frank. I was in charge of the referees who included players Levitan, Boyer, King, Bertolone, Gadoua and Pohlman.

Refereeing but not playing Pelicans included Ulibarri, Carter and Williamson.

Around 3:00 the rain stopped, unfortunately so did the tournament. In the final pool game, all teams had played at least three by then, a pretty severe concussion stopped play requiring a ambulance. The player was released from Stanford Hospital the next day and was driven home by teammates. He seems to be recovering.

At that point it was decided enough rugby had been played. Points were totaled and the hardware awarded.

First place went to Old Southwest, second to the Bald Eagles, Third Silverhawks.

I want to thank all the players who refereed the games. We had no complaints about refereeing. And if there is a blessing to being over 50, this type of competition must be part of it.


Stanford women 22 – ALL BLUES 27 Referee: Sandy Robertson
The two sides came together for a friendly at Stanford on Sunday. Over the first 30 minutes or so the ball saw all of the field, except the in goal area as the teams battled back and forth. Finally Berkeley got a try. In the second half Berkeley stayed in the lead as the teams traded scores. With a few minutes to go and about 5 points down Stanford had a lineout near midfield when one of their players absentmindedly ambled up the lineout just as the hooker was about to throw. Berkeley quickly took the free kick and after several phases got the try with about a minute remaining. Stanford kicked off, quickly regained possession, marched to the goal, and after a few minutes of battering got the consolation try.

NorCal Youth Championships RAINED OUT



Frosh/soph: ELSIE ALLEN 36 – Marin 20 Referee: Cary Bertolone
The heavy rains stopped for an hour and we kicked off at 5:30 between these two evenly matched squads. I was impressed at how many good players were on the field at the same time. The rugby was fluid with both teams having multiple phase possessions, good rucking and clean rugby. A heavy-duty hail storm nailed us towards the end of the first half. "SIC" was a popular phrase and everyone thought it was cool playing in the hail (the fans, not so much).


Friday High School Match
RAIN 3 – Scott Refereeing in the Rain 0


Varsity: LAMORINDA 38 – Pleasanton 5 Referee: Rob Hendrickson
Lamo's varsity teams got quite a run Saturday morning, starting with a 9:00 game at O’Dowd, after which they quickly piled into cars to come back and play an 11:30 game against Pleasanton at Campolindo HS in Lafayette. Lamo's gold team dominated in the first half in terms of possession, and score, and at half time the score was 26 - 0.

Pleasanton's defense stiffened and they put more offensive possession together in the second half, which was only 12 - 5. We had decent weather for most of the game except for 15 minutes of hard rain midway through the second half.

Elsie Allen Lobos girls 0 - AMAZONS 94 Referee: Alan Petty
TJs: Jack Petty, Kevin Digulio
The Amazons showed up at Elsie Allen HS with only 13 girls, but they were the right ones. They scored often and through many different players. The #7 and #9 were really special players, the left wing was very difficult to tackle. The Lobos played all the way through and kept their heads up, but these two teams are on different levels.



For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Wednesday, March 23, 2011




Want to be a part of tomorrow’s rugby today?

Fifty teams will compete for U8, U10 and U12 titles on Treasure Island on Sunday, March 27. Referees would be greatly appreciated.

The games are short, the players are keen, the future is bright. Bring your shades.

Let us know if you would like more details.


Would you like to be the fourth official or scoreboard operator for Saturday’s super league battle of the unbeatens between SFGG and the Utah Warriors? It means free admission to what should be a great matchup at Sheeran Field.

We also have the battle at the top of the table in D1 going on when East Palo Alto Bulldogs host the Olympic Club. There are two games scheduled; it would be nice to have another Assistant Referee if you can run but cannot ref for whatever reason.


BARBARIANS 5 – Olympic Club 38 Referee: Pete Smith

Seconds: Barbarians – Olympic Club NOT PLAYED

EPA Razorbacks 21 - SAN MATEO 32 Referee: John Coppinger
AR: Ed Mortlock
Evaluator: David Williamson
On the artificial turf at Cubberley Community Center (which could only be reached by wading across the flooded clay track), San Mateo ran off 32-21 winners.

Rain, rain, more rain, and lots of handling errors, but a clean match played in good spirits with both teams playing a wide open attacking style of rugby.

Cubberley brought back lots of memories because it was Mission's home pitch for many years. Tom Mell had his compound fracture of his leg there (which I think was my last game for Mission and Bruce Carter was the first responder in that match) and I ruptured my biceps tendon on the Cubberley pitch trying to arm-tackle a Gaels prop the year before Mell broke his leg. Olympic Club played Bay Barbos right after EPA/SM and Brian McClenahan played for O Club. Brian doesn't admit this readily, but he played for Mission at Cubberley for two years before he went off to fame and glory at Cal. A couple of other former Mission players were also around.

My thanks to Ed Mortlock for running AR and Dave Williamson for his feedback.

Seconds: EPA Razorbacks – San Mateo NOT PLAYED

SAC LIONS 13 – EPA Bulldogs 10 Referee: JC Van Staden
AR: Blake Crawley

Seconds: Sac Lions – EPA Bulldogs NOT PLAYED

ALL BLUES 12 – Amazons 10 Referee: Stephanie Bruce
Assessor: Bryan Porter

Diablo Gaels 10 – FRESNO 20 Referee: Olivia Nigh (Eastern Penn)
AR: John Pohlman
Evaluator: Dixon Smith
Mare Island, Vallejo, CA
It was about 45 and rainy. Light sprinkle to start the match, but it increased to a nice chilling rain by the second half. A few games had already been played on the field in the morning, so grassy spots were few and far between. We often chose between one muddy sport and another muddy spot for the mark on scrums. John Pohlman was an AR and coach while Dixon Smith had me on the mic. The other sideline was covered by a Diablo TJ.

The match started with an unconverted try by Diablo up the gut at minute 7, and was quickly returned with a try from Fresno at minute 11. Diablo promptly answered with another unconverted try at minute 20. Fresno slotted in a PK at goal around minute 30 and added another try at the 40th minute. Half had the scoreboard at 20 Fresno to 10 Diablo. We did have a knock-on at the dive for the try in goal by Diablo in the second half. The field deterioration, muddy ball and solid tackling kept us out of the in goal for the second half. Final score: Fresno 20 – Diablo 10.

Play was generally characterized as good solid rugby. We had excellent ball handling and relatively few scrums to start the game. I can honestly say that I would not pick one stand out player from either team as both sides played as teams. Excellent support at the tackle to create solid rucks. Both teams did successfully counter-ruck for the ball. Proper defensive alignment limited break-aways. Most field movement was achieved from turnover in the open field and multiple phase offense as opposed to clever set piece plays. Scrum count escalated into the second half, but we only had two resets in the entire game – and neither was from the field conditions which is a testament to the even competition of the scrums of each squad. Only a steal or two in the line outs during the match by the defense, but again, the teams retained their own ball. Fresno had a nice line-out maul that allowed them to put Diablo on the back foot close in. Back lines unfortunately were not tested with the conditions but for their kicking game and back 3 response. It was a thoroughly enjoyable game despite the weather given the competition between the teams and the character of the players on the field.

Seconds: Diablo Gaels - FRESNO Referee: John Pohlman
The seconds’ game was tens with 15-20 min halves. Fresno won on the last play. Cold, wet and muddy field. Everyone cheered at the final whistle.

BA Baracus – Chico Rescheduled to April 23

SANTA ROSA 20 – SFGG Colts 7 Referee: Anna McMahan (New England)
ARs: Bruce Carter, Ben Bravo
Referee Coach: Bryant Byrnes
In a brief return to Pelicanland I reffed a cold and rainy top-of-the-table clash as a warm up for my CPD game next week. While I was delighted to get to see rugby friends I hadn't seen in a long time, I was a bit disappointed in the weather. As someone traveling from Boston to NorCal during March, I was clearly hoping for a reprieve from cold, wet New England. Alas, it wasn't to be so.

Santa Rosa hosted SFGG Colts at For Pete's Sake Field on Saturday, and it was a wonder to behold teams playing on grass and not turf. Both teams were ready to play from the start, and it was clear that there was a lot of feeling in this match. I would love to have had the opportunity to ref these two teams in clear weather, because I think the rugby would have been great. As it was we had a lot of scrums, and the ball was kept pretty close in. The backs saw occasional opportunities with the ball, but most of the running came from 2nd and 3rd phase play.

My score card was soup by the end of the 80 minutes, plus my fingers were too numb to write anything down. Santa Rosa started the scoring with a converted try, followed in due time by a penalty. SFGG pulled within 3 when they scored their own converted try, but SR finished out the half by scoring their second converted try. Halftime score 17 - 7. The second half was more of a maintenance affair, with neither team getting the upper hand. Cold hands and tired bodies led to lots of knock-ons and missed passes. The only second half score was a penalty kick by SR for a full time score of 20 - 7.

Both teams played positive rugby in spite of the conditions, and it was a delight to ref this game. Thank you to Joe and Elvis for captaining their sides well. Thank you to Bruce and Ben for the ride from my hotel and for braving the weather to run as AR's - it's great to have help from the sidelines. And thank you to Bryant for withstanding the weather and for the very helpful halftime and post-game comments. All of those things help make me a better ref.

Seconds: Santa Rosa 12 – SFGG COLTS 15 Referee: Bruce Carter
AR: Anna McMahan
For Pete’s Sake was developed and dedicated for days like this, days when otherwise ruggers might be moping around the house, on the inside looking out.

Owned and operated by rugby folk in the memory of Pete Eiermann, whose motto might be ‘the game’s the thing’, the pitch hosted three matches in the midst of several days of torrential downpours.

Most of Pelicanland’s winter storms (including those that arrive after the equinox) blow in off the Gulf of Alaska. That’s cold water dousing the hopes of soccer and baseball players but merely wetting the appetites of ruggers.

My hands where white like alabaster before halftime of the first-side match. I could grip my touch flag but there was no way I’d be able to manipulate a pen or even put my hand into my pocket, so had my circulation deserted my extremities for more vital climes. I was happy to see that there was a scoreboard, ably operated, and I wouldn’t need to tally the scoring.

Both teams ‘warmed up’ and were eager to get going.

I have red-green color blindness. With bold colors and bright lighting, I can distinguish most shades, but with forest green, a muted red, no direct sun and a thick applique of mud, forget it. So I refereed with my signals: “You – roll away,” (touching player on ground).

When we can’t see the numbers we often referee the faces – usually, I quickly learn who’s playing what position so that I can address them by number without having to see the numerals. But on this day – the faces were often obscured.

When do you have frequent water breaks on a bitterly cold day? When the water is being used to irrigate mud-filled eye sockets.

This was a lot of fun! Rugby: the antidote to modern life.

Marin 3 – SEAHAWKS 21 Referee: Rich Anderson
Mud and maul were the words heard most often last Saturday as Marin hosted the Seahawks.

With the pitch resembling something out of the Bayou, the Seahawks used the tactic of keeping the ball tight with the forwards, recycling the ball quickly for short gains. This tactic produced two forward tries in the first half. The second half saw the field (and the referee) become slower and wetter. Second half penalty kicks rounded out the scoring.

Seconds: Marin – Seahawks NOT PLAYED

VACAVILLE 24 – Berkeley 0 Referee: Ray Schwartz
TJs: Bill Long & chilly Berkeley-ite
Willis Jepson Middle School, Vacaville

In stark contrast to my day in Vacaville the previous weekend, different field at the same school, different scrumhalf for local Black Dogs, different outcome as well...but more than any of sunshine, not even the threat of sun. And field was wet and sloppy...getting muddier by the minute.

Playing inside the track, w/ touch altogether too close to the concrete curb edging, and lines barely visible, we pressed on. The captains, Will and Gill, were keen to get started. I was thankful to have brought the long studs along, as they kicked off right at 1pm.

I knew the Black Dogs were missing their #9 the week before, but hadn’t realized he was also their captain. Back from his weekend commitment to the Marine Corps Reserve, Gill had a huge impact in this game, allowing his 10 and 12 (Matt and Curtis) to play in their preferred positions. He also strongly outplayed his opposite number.

So though it seemed the Berkeley side was more ferocious and committed at the tackle/ruck, Vacaville was better at getting clean ball out into space, and from there, Matt Hefner was able to distribute, and Curtis Clark was his favorite runner.

When Vacaville scored first, even then it seemed an anomaly. Berkeley would surely respond. Then as Vacaville went up 12-0, I still felt Berkeley was very much in the game. But they would finally wilt as all the pressure was coming from the home team. In fact, Berkeley rarely enjoyed attacking ball all day. Their one venture inside the attacking 22 quickly turned into a dropout for V-ville.

The game was extraordinarily well played considering the slop and slick conditions. I was amazed to realize in the end not a single scrum had collapsed, yet all were contested well.

I felt terrible, first as I realized the field was deteriorating and so might the home team’s good relations with the school, but that also meant there would be no chance at all of a B Game being played. And Bill Long, a new ref to rugby, had made his way up from Fresno for the chance the run.

Bill was such a good sport about it, and it was pleasure to have him. I had worked with him at the KOT, and he reminded me that it always seems to be raining when we connect at the pitch. We had a great chat at The Good Heifer. He reports high school rugby is just exploding now around Fresno. Before he took off to visit his aunt in Napa, Bill promised to come ref at the PCIT in Morgan Hill April 30/May 1.

One old friend stepped forward from Berkeley at the party, or should I say two...?! When at the USA 7s two years ago in San Diego I had sat down and shared a few pints with Lamorinda parents Jon and Mel Wall. As Melody came forward to give me a hug, I had not yet made the connection. I had no idea Jon had started playing. They were in support their young son Dillon, then a 9-year old scrumhalf for Lamo, when we first met.

Jon played very well on the day for Berkeley. I remember being sad when he subbed out midway into the 2nd half. He had insanely kind things to say about my reffing, which I felt was cool considering his team had been so soundly beat. Somehow I had kept the spirit of the game up high and the players engaged right to the end. Heck, it was a struggle just to stay warm and concentrate until the 80th minute!

Seconds: Vacaville – Berkeley NOT PLAYED

COLUSA 36 – Reno Zephyrs 12 Referee: Mike King
I had the privilege of officiating the valiant Zephyrs who traveled through snow and adverse road conditions to honor their commitment to Colusa County and this great game that we love. While the players are a mix of young and old, they all have “true grit”.

The match was hotly contested in the rucks and open field, through much of the first half. Colusa opened the scoring with a line break after a long series of crashes around the fringe of the rucks. A later try was scored by the wing tight-roping down the touch line. Reno answered with a nifty stolen pass by its #12 and follow by his mates. 12-7 at half.

Colusa started the second half with a banging movement leading to a score near the corner by #3. Reno countered and took the game back to the other end, knocking on the door for several minutes. After being denied, the Zephyrs finally seemed to feel the effects of the long trip. The home side was able to deftly run and pass its way to several more scores and its final margin of victory. Colusa looks like a real contender for a playoff spot. Despite the wet pitch and wetter weather, it was real pleasure to ref this match between these two fine sides.

Reno Academy – Shasta CANCELED

Mendocino 5 – VALLEJO 28 Referee: Cary Bertolone
Raining heavily on a soft field, with snow in sight on the surrounding mountains, this was mud rugby at its finest. Five minutes into the match, a Mendo prop gave me a bear hug before a scrum down to make sure I wasn't the only clean guy on the field. Although Vallejo wore red and Mendo had blue, they were all brown within minutes, small eyeholes peeking through the mud to see where the next scrum was (had just a "few" knock-ons). Vallejo scored with up field running on the 4th and 16th minute of the game. Things got a little testy, but a yellow card later, things settled down and Vallejo scored another try while playing short, for a 21-0 halftime lead. The second half started out in similar fashion with Vallejo the bigger, stronger team, but Mendo not giving in and playing hard. Vallejo scored again, but then started making stupid penalties. Mendo came back to score a try and spent much of the last 25 minutes pounding at the try zone, close to scoring a few other times. A lot of laughing and mud slinging as most everyone had a great time. Pictures were taken by both teams together, after the match, as we were sooo muddy.

Monterey 0 – SOUTH VALLEY 27 Referee: James Hinkin
or possibly Aptos 0 - Morgan Hill 27
This referee is starting to wonder how Monterey ever got a reputation as a beachside resort town. A few weeks ago I had to drive through the Great Blizzard of 2011 to get to a match held in wet conditions and temps in the 40s. Saturday I had to drive through a rainstorm to get to a match held in wet conditions and temps in the 40s. Miserable place...

In any case I arrived to see both teams dressed and warming up for a 12:30 kickoff. The field was being used for little league team photos when I got there (not sure why they weren't used the baseball field in the sports complex...) but the Monterey admins got it sorted out and off the field with 5 minutes to spare before the first whistle.

There was a significant wind and Morgan Hill won the toss and elected to save the wind for the second half. This proved to be a good decision because while Monterey was able to spend most of the half in the Morgan Hill half they were unable to break the defensive line. Morgan Hill defended for long stretches until eventually a breakaway would get them all the way down the field. Three tries were scored in this manner with some excellent speed shown by the Morgan Hill #4 as he raced 70 yards to score. With the wind conversions were not a serious proposition so the score stood at 15-0 at the break.

The second half saw Morgan Hill use the wind to keep the ball in the Monterey half but Monterey's defense was improving. They held the visitors out of the try zone for the most part but were finally breached for a pair of tries late in the half. With one of them centered the Morgan Hill flyhalf was finally able to convert so the final score stood at 27-0 to the visitors.

ARROYO GRANDE 17 – Paso Robles 13 Referee: Jim Crenshaw
I enjoyed the Arroyo Grande - Paso Robles match.

Intermittent showers were the fare in Arroyo Grande Saturday as AG defeated Paso Robles 17 to 13 in a hard fought match.

Stanislaus 5 – SAMOA UNITED 38 Referee: Jeff Jury
Beautiful area in Turlock for a pitch.

Fog women – West Bay Angels Referee: Bruce Bernstein
No report received.

SAN FRANCISCO FOG 37 - Saints 17 Referee: Sam Davis
Cold, Raining and muddy on Treasure Island Job Corps field home of the Fog. At kick off time the Saints were missing a few of their teammates due to injury and family commitments. They agreed to continue to play in this league match with only 11 players. Fog was in full strength. The Saints scored twice in the first 15 mins and it looked like the Fog was still going to have its hands full. At the end of the first half it was Fog 12 Saints 10. Once they switched sides and the Fog had the wind at their backs the Fog started an effective attack that added 5 trys to the score board. The Saints were down to 10 players at the beginning of the 2nd half but still came back and scored one more try at the 26 min mark. It was a good game and fun to participate in.

SF Fog seconds 10 - ST. MARY'S thirds: Sixty-something Referee: Preston Gordon

ST. MARY’S 46 – San Diego State 5 Referee: Chris Tucker
ARs: Lee Johnson (North Mids RFU), Preston Gordon
#4: Ron Decausemaker
Evaluator: Mike Malone
Location: Moraga slip 'n' slide.
Weather: Welsh.

My pre-game prediction was: Kick, knock-on, scrum, repeat. Pretty much the story of the match, the key missing point being the utter dominance of the St. Mary's scrum. The only ones they lost were on their own not-straight put-in, and they took a few against the head too. With such an attacking platform, they were going to have a good day in conditions like these. The Aztec backline didn't help their cause by playing a little too flat for their own good (and mine, took me too long to adapt and get out of the way) and continually overrunning the ball carrier, giving too many attacking scrums to St. Mary's.

The first try came after 15 minutes, with the Gaels forwards sucking in defenders and then the backs finishing it off nicely out wide. The second followed not long after, with a missed tackle assignment in the backs giving the St. Mary's inside centre a glorious 10m long slide along the water through the goalposts. The third and final of the half was the best by far, with the forwards driving again and again, and the final pick and drive touched down out wide for 19-0 at the half.

The second half was more of the same, the pack setting the tone and in one case just wiping out the defending scrum. As it collapsed the 8 man picked, drove and scored at the feet of the unbound flanker. Just as well, really.

The visitors got their moment of redemption late in the 2nd half, when they ran wide, the winger tackled 5m short. Lee raised his flag, but I called to play on as the ball was on the deck before the player went into touch. The defending players stood around pointing out the touch flag, and the Aztecs scored. A lesson we all learn -- play to the whistle. At that point I should have consulted with Lee, who had done a solid job helping me out, but I gave the try and rather hung him out to dry. I apologised later in the Round Up.

Thanks to Lee, Preston and Ron for their help, and for Mike for saying nice things about me after while helping me see a few things clearer with hindsight.

Seconds: ST. MARY’S 33 – San Diego State 5 Referee: Lee Johnson (North Mids)
The game was reduced to 40 minutes due to the pitch being waterlogged and barely playable.

I would like to thank you for letting me referee whilst I was here and particularly the Stanford v Chico State game as that was the first game I've really enjoyed for some time.

Sierra JC 7 – CALIFORNIA frosh/soph 35 Referee: Phil Akroyd
ARs: Brad Scott & Rob Hendrickson
Referee Coach: Matt Eason

The conditions were almost a copy of those from the previous night: a turf field, a howling southerly wind, consistently at about 30 mph, freezing cold but this time with buckets and buckets of rain.

I'd been looking forward to this one for a couple of weeks. Two, very well-coached teams, obviously on different locations of the rugby map, but Sierra play well above their weight. Sierra are very well-drilled in the forwards and play with 100% commitment all of the time. As Don said last week, they are a complete team and coming off of a 90-0 win last week, their confidence was high.

That seemed to be shattered in the first minute when Cal scored from their first phase play and converted the try. They battered their way in for a second ten minutes later and nine minutes again after that, then again eleven later. 28-0 at half-time suggests that it was pretty easy going, but the majority of the game was fought in the middle half of the pitch. Sierra defenders smacked down runners, even with a weight disadvantage. Cal wanted to play a wide game, but struggled with the slightly narrower football field. The fly-half drifted with ball in hand, giving his wingers absolutely no room on the touch lines. When they brought the game back to a bump and run game up the middle of the field, Sierra dealt with the predictable play very well. The Cal scrum-half delivered slow ball, allowing SJC to counter ruck and spoil even more. He also seemed to have a problem with feeding the ball straight at the scrum.

Sierra scored pretty quickly after the break, giving the home supporters something to cheer about in the worsening conditions. As the subs came and went and the ball became more difficult to handle, the game moved forward, still at pace but with plenty of errors and no real direction.

If I were a Sierra fan, I'd be pretty happy that my team gave the visitors a difficult afternoon and if I were a Cal fan, I'd be a little disappointed that my team did not score more and execute well enough in all areas of the game. If these two programs were to meet again on a sunny spring day on a full sized pitch, I think that Cal could score considerably more points but credit to Sierra for giving them a tough game.

UC Santa Cruz – Fresno State TO BE PLAYED APRIL 2

San Francisco State 0 – SANTA ROSA JC 15 Referee: Tony Levitan
Thanks to the hyper-vigilant weather prognosticators who manage to City of San Francisco fields, SFSU hosted this fixture at For Pete's Sake in Santa Rosa on a cold, slightly blustery and rainy day. But, at least we were first game off of three so the pitch was in reasonable shape and players remained distinguishable by jersey color.

Other than being marked by a bevy of knock-ons numbering just south of infinity, the match was fairly contested and close till the end.

Halftime shivering commenced with Santa Rosa JC leading 5-0 after a late unconverted try. SRJC put across a try early in second half and then another in the waning moments, stringing together a collection of impressive backline movements thanks to strong, creative running from their center/captain.

SFSU threatened a few times behind the nifty kicking of their flyhalf, but Santa Rosa's defense remained stout. The elements helped as well as numerous probes from both teams fell prey to a slippery ball.


HUMBOLDT OLD GROWTH 16 - Redwood Empire 10 Referee: Tom Zanarini
Colleen and I drove up to Eureka Friday night to enjoy a weekend on the Lost Coast. Weather wasn't horrible; we passed through intermittent rain showers and one rock slide on the way up. We checked into the Best Western on 5th Ave. Very nice spot with a hot(ish) breakfast, heated pool and Jacuzzi. Dinner both nights was at the Eureka Sea Grill on E Street. Both nights were fantastic. Sturgeon Friday night and Long Island Duck Saturday. Colleen had wild salmon Friday and halibut Saturday. Great beers on draught, highly recommended.

So, then Saturday was a rugby day! The rain came and went periodically with a nice downpour at the whistle. Sloppy field and wet ball created a lot of scrums. Mostly played up the middle. Fun match to referee.

HUMBOLDT STATE 82 - U. of San Francisco 5 Ref: Zanarini
Right after the men's club match, the colleges were ready to go. I'd like to thank both teams for rescheduling the match to 3pm to help spread our referees throughout Pelicanland. Mike King was originally scheduled to ref the men's match, but then Colusa would not have a ref for their match. No use sending two men to do what one can. USF traveled light, but thankfully made the trip. Lack of numbers and practice time showed as they had little game plan or coordination. HSU ran at will.

Sunday we awoke again to light rains so I found the energy for a 10k run around Eureka before our 5 hour drive home. A lunch stop at the Waterwheel Restaurant in Garberville served up some great omelets and coffee. I also scored a wood-carved pelican in their shop, which is the home of the Southern Humboldt Arts Association.

I did not referee the girls U-19 match because I did not make contact with anyone involved with the team. Both team contacts on our list were outdated, which I have since fixed and Scott has already changed on our website. A rep for the men's club said the U-19 had a referee on the team. That referee was actually a Level 1 certified player with HSU women who was in a playoff match. So Christina Alatorre took the whistle, she's the new contact listed. She reported that Humboldt lost big.

PCRFU Women’s D2 College Play-in game in Redding:
Humboldt State 5 – WASHINGTON STATE 31 Referee: Joe Androvich


Friday 3:30 PM
JV: Bishop O'Dowd - SAN DIEGO MUSTANGS Referee: Sam Davis
It was cold and raining and everyone was ready to play. The Mustangs players were a bigger and more experienced team than BOD and it showed up on the field. My score card was so wet that I could not write the score down. Final score Mustangs a lot BOD a little.

Saturday is a Rugby Day. 8:00 AM boot check ;-)

Varsity: De La Salle 22 - San Diego Mustangs 12 Referee: Sam Davis
The Vallejo Field was wet and in good shape at the beginning of the game as it rained most of the game a lot more mud and loose balls. This was a great game to be a part of as both teams contested until the final whistle blew. De La Salle scored first but within a few mins San Diego tied it up on a multi-phase play that went out to the wing and cut back to score halfway between the post and the sidelines. The rest of the half both teams were back and forth in their opponents red zone. The half ended De La Salle 7 Mustangs 5. De La Salle’s backs started playing smart mud ball. They forced a knock on and grubber kicked it to the try line and scored. They missed the conversion. Mustangs came back and tied it up. The rain the mud and game went back and forth until another deep kick into the Mustang 22 knock on and grubber kick and De La Salle was up by 7. De La Salle had the pressure on when Mustangs’ #9 tripped the De La Salle #9 as he was going for the ball carrier. De La Salle added 3 more points. The Mustangs crossed into De La Salle’s 22 and were attacking. Mustangs knock on at the scrum down were able to clear the ball back deep into Mustang territory and the game finished up De La Salle 22, San Diego 12

Saturday afternoon: Fog – Saints, recounted above.

Varsity: BISHOP O'DOWD 40 - Berkeley 14 Referee: Sam Davis
Monday night game Berkeley had a few great players but BOD played like a team. High scoring game with both sides not giving up till the final whistle!

Nevada 0 –SAN JOSE STATE 71 Referee: Don Pattalock
AR: Phil Ulibarri; TJ: C. Lott
Nevada was cursed by spring break and an I80 closure. That fact aside, SJSU played a solid game of rugby.

[Editor’s Note: the home team was cursed because the freeway between them and the visiting team was closed due to a blizzard? This must be non-Euclidean geometry.]


Date: Thur., Mar 17, 2011
Game: U-19 Girls International Friendly
Result: Alameda Riptide RFC 0 – SHAWNIGAN LAKE SCHOOL IRON WOMEN RFC 10 Referee: Paul Berman

Venue: Will C. Wood Middle School, 420 Grand St., Alameda
Kick-Off: 16:50
Ground: Firm under foot, no goal posts, perimeter cinder athletic track
Weather: Sunny & bright
Comments: Shawnigan Lake School, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, swung through the Bay Area on their pre-season, winter 'rust removal' tour of "Pelican Land" (Northern California), having already played Motherlode (lost) & Davis (won).

This was a nail bitingly tough affair from the get-go, with both sides sizing up the other, no holds barred. Straight running & strong tackling saw Alameda pinned in their own territory for much of the first half. Shawnigan preferring to ruck, while Alameda preferred to maul, whenever practical. The ball was moved along both lines effectively & efficiently to the pleasure of both spectators & coaches.

The match remained extremely even during the second half with Alameda gaining steadily more confidence going forward. In the final quarter Shawnigan’s pack lifted their game & were able to cross the try line from close in. Their first, excellent score came through their No. 8 - Emily Alexander, after tremendous work by their forwards down the left hand edge of the pitch. Their second touch-down coming in similar fashion approximately 8 minutes later from even closer to Alameda's touch & try line by hooker - Jenna Hickman.
Point Spread: Shawnigan Lake - 2 tries

Date: Sat., Feb 26, 2011
Game: Northern California RFU, U-19 Girls Division
ALAMEDA RIPTIDE RFC 29 – Davis Lady Devils RFC 5 Referee: Paul Berman
Venue: Thompson Field, Alameda High School, Clement Ave & Walnut St, Alameda
Kick-Off: 16:07
Ground: Firm under foot with several soft patches; American Football posts
Weather: Sunny, bright, slight wind west to east
It was lovely to see the west stand so full of supporters & well-wishers for Riptide's 1st home game of the season. The Ladies didn't disappoint with an open running game. Both packs did an excellent job of staying on their feet at the scrum, without a single reset all game. Both sets of coaches should be delighted with the way their respective forwards broke the gain line. Alameda were able to release their back-line to greater effect scoring several tries close to the corners. No quarter was given in the tackle & it was nice to see plenty of low, productive tackling. Davis through a knock or two ran a little thin in numbers, borrowed a couple of quality home team players during the 2nd half, just as it should be in this wonderful sport. The '3rd half' feast was just fantastic, with the diversity of the bountiful cuisine reflective of the diversity within the 30 - 40 strong Alameda squad & community.

Point Spread: Alameda - 5 tries, 2 conversions; Davis - 1 try


Live Oak 0 – EAST PALO ALTO 22 Referee: Bruce Carter
I work in King City on Fridays, at Mee Memorial Hospital. It’s a lovely little town on a bend in the river halfway between Salinas and Paso Robles, where the northern half of the Salinas Valley’s salad crops give way to drier-acclimated vineyards, garlic and mustard growing.

We plead with high school teams not to play on Saturdays. When they accommodate us, we drive 90 miles straight from work without complaint, changing clothes in the car as necessary (while driving, you understand) to get there on time.

This was another of the infamous Northern California rain weekends. Living in a Mediterranean climate, we receive our annual precipitation in a few aliquots that traditionally arrive between the beginning of the rugby season and the end of it, usually focused around the Saturdays.

Leaving work and heading up 101, I thought: this is a heck of a long carwash, especially for free, sixty miles of a dirt-peeling pelting.

The Morgan Hill athletic facility is fantastic. The water park is highly recommended for summertime visits by our readers with children, grandchildren, godchildren or a desire for a second childhood.

There are more than a dozen soccer/rugby pitches, two with lights and grandstands. We hope that any number of Pelicans will familiarize themselves with them during the Pacific Coast Invitational High School Tournament April 29-May 1.

This was as good, fun match, clean as a newly-boiled whistle.

Thanks, guys!

Christian Brothers 26 - GRANITE BAY 27 Referee: Phil Akroyd
One of the few games to go ahead on Friday night in Sacramento due to the weather, this was played at Granite Parks' turf field, under the lights. The rain actually held off for the entirety of the match but there was a cold wind blowing throughout, making at least one pair of very cold hands.

Granite Bay went out hard, early in the game, dominating with what appeared to be a physically larger pack. They swung the ball around nicely and scored consistently through the first half, going ahead by twenty-two unanswered points, then CB rescued a try right before half time to bring it back to 7 - 22.

CB came out anew in the second half. Playing like a different team, with urgency and simply going forward. As Granite Bay had been in offence for the vast majority of the first half, they were unused to defending and had a real problem with moving away from the tackle. Repeated team offences saw two players go to the bin early in the second half. Christian Brothers took advantage and scored in the first period of a one man advantage, but then Granite Bay responded. It was 12-27 with twenty-two minutes to go.

The game was now getting very, very competitive. Seventeen and eighteen year olds were struggling to keep their emotions in check and one small push-and-shove incident between two forwards escalated, resulting in one of the pushers and shovers sitting out for ten minutes and one for the rest of the game, as he was one of the previous offenders for tackle/ruck infringements. Silly boys.

With extra space on the field, Christian Brothers found the gaps, scored and scored again and converted both tries. The watch had been beeping as the last try was under construction, leaving it too late for the Brothers to take the lead. A great way to start the weekend.


Frosh/soph: Berkeley 21 – LAMORINDA 31 Referee: Rob Hendrickson
Lamo f/s managed to hold off Berkeley's f/s on a wet and windy morning game at Berkeley's Gilman field. While both teams' defenses made most advances much past the gain line difficult, and Berkeley in particular capitalized on quite a few successful counter ruck turn overs, Lamo tended to dominate on offense, with Berkeley's tries coming on line breaks and speed. Well-played game which bodes well for both teams' upper teams next year.

PENINSULA GREEN 7 – Bellarmine 0 Referee: Chris Fisher

JC Gilbert
JC Gilbert, on exchange from the Ontario Society, enjoys Friday afternoon, March 11, with Bjorn Stumer and Eric Rauscher, partaking of Pelican hospitality at the Artesa Winery in Napa.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Thursday, March 17, 2011




Cary Bertolone has earned promotion to L2. Congratulations are in order.

Cary has been one of our road warriors, and we are grateful to have him.


Yellow cards for repeat infringements and technical infringements such as not-back-ten do not need to be reported (unless of course the repeat infringement is, say, dangerous tackling).

These are the cards that you should report to

All red cards
Yellow cards for Law 10.4 violations (punching, kicking, dangerous tackling, etc.)


Raise your hand if you’d like to avail your whistle of one of these opportunities:

Sunday, March 20: Nevada hosting San Jose State

Friday, March 25: one afternoon game in Berkeley, evening games at the California Maritime Academy in Vallejo and at Stanford.


EPA BULLDOGS 20 – Sac Capitals 15 Referee: JC Gilbert (Ontario)
AR: Tony Levitan
Evaluator: David Williamson
This top-of-the-table clash between two undefeated teams was refereed by an exchange referee from the Ontario society. We understand his hosts found the time to take him around the Napa Valley, to find the Up and Under Pub in Richmond, and to visit the City by the Bay at least twice.

Seconds: SAC CAPITALS 33 - EPA Bulldogs 17 Referee: Tony Levitan
After a spirited A-side match, both clubs brought a bit of a "let's get it over with" approach to the B-side match, shortening the halves to 30 minutes. A seemingly collective effort on the Bulldogs' part to see what they could get away with was interrupted on multiple occasions by swift ball movement, quality set piece play, and hard running from both sides. The Capitals earned a 19-0 halftime lead on the strength of 3 tries, 2 of which were converted. The second half was more evenly played with 5 more tries hitting the scoreboard, 3 for EPA and another 2 for Sacramento. Final tally: 33-17 in favor of Sacramento.

SAN MATEO 53 –Barbarians 24 Referee: Jim Crenshaw
San Mateo hosted the Bay Barbarians in San Mateo last Saturday with bright sunshine and mid 60's at kickoff - a perfect rugby day in Northern California.

San Mateo was better this day, leading 26 to 14 at the half and winning the match, final score 53 to 24.

It was a wide open style by both teams with at least one try by the Barbarians starting 6 or 7 meters inside their own goal. No kicking involved with this try, just a lot of slick passing and support.

It's really a treat to referee these matches!!

Seconds: San Mateo –Barbarians

OLYMPIC CLUB 82 – EPA Razorbacks 5 Referee: Tom Zanarini
Evaluator: Mike Malone

Seconds: OLYMPIC CLUB 54 - EPA Razorbacks 0 Referee: Rob Hendrickson
The Olympic Club’s B side hosted a young EPA Razorbacks B side on the Gaelic Field as an opener to the A side game. EPA conceded several early penalties for over enthusiastic play at the breakdowns, until finally settling down and playing good rugby. EPA’s hard tackling made the O Club forwards work to cross the gain line, but once they find a break in the line, the O Club’s backs exploited it, resulting in 5 tries in each half. With the exception of one brief flare up mid-way into the second half, it was a well-played game.

Berkeley 0 – DIABLO GAELS 52 Referee: Lois Bukowski

Chico 15 – SFGG COLTS 50 Referee: Preston Gordon

Seconds: Chico 0 – SFGG COLTS 34 Ref: Gordon

San Jose Seahawks 10 – FRESNO 54 Referee: Paul Bretz
Fresno scored first, more frequently, and last.

Marin 13 – BA BARACUS 22 Referee: Bjorn Stumer
Referee Coach: Bryant Byrnes
This was a pretty even match between the Marin Reds and Baracus, played in the uneven and unevenly lined pitch at MLK Park in Marin City. Both teams were equally fit & fast, and in chatty form. A bit of effort was required to keep the balls straight at the put in in the scrums and also at lineouts, something made harder by a stiff wind. A good and even contest ensued in the first half, only marred by a yellow card, late in the half, given for repeated back chat by Baracus. Two penalties each saw the half close at 3-3. Baracus found its form in the second half, with successful spinning of the ball wide. Marin could not gather composure, and gave the match away through indiscipline. Final score: Marin 13 (3) - Baracus 22 (3).

A big thanks to the effective touch judges provided by each team, and for Bryant Byrnes who provided support and effective referee coaching. Overall a pretty good match between two good teams.

Vacaville 17 – SANTA ROSA 51 Referee: Ray Schwartz
TJs: Gary Gordon & Marcus Williamson
Willis Jepson Middle School, Vacaville
A spectacular day, brilliant sunshine, light breeze, sitting in a valley framed w/ the emerald covered Vaca Mountains, we came together on what was one of the finest grass fields I've ever had the pleasure of trotting upon. Lush grass, not a weed or a gopher, firm under foot, never slipping or greasy, but soft. Better than the best field turf for sure. A full sized pitch, well lined but for the fact that we were also in the outfield of an adjacent baseball diamond, and so the right and left field lines jutted out into the field of play, somewhat confusing, but play on!

Santa Rosa had two full sides, but Vacaville, at home, had just enough and a few more. The game was played in a fine spirit and at a high pace, but a lack of skill at key positions exposed Vacaville. Santa Rosa made mostly crisp passes and took the ball well at pace, while Vacaville knocked on more than a few times. Rosa commitment and skill at the tackle/ruck assured their backs would see lots of quality ball. Vacaville would battle brilliantly, but come up short all too often. Rosa was up 27-0 before Vacaville punched one in just before haltime.

The 2nd half started out pretty even, with everyone contributing the contest. Rosa eventually scored first but Vacaville quickly answered back, and on the ensuing kick off, Rosa uncharacteristically sent the ball directly into touch. From scrum center, Vacaville #9 Matt Hefner fed, and wrapped around to take the ball into space and scamper up the 'blindside' untouched to score under the post. I felt for a moment we had a game on our hands, but Rosa stiffened and cranked it up a notch as Vacaville wilted. I wondered if we should call the game early, but Rosa wanted to keep scoring points, and w/ Vacaville threatening at fulltime, a poorly managed ruck turned into a length of the field game ender for Rosa.

Hefner then reffed the B game as I got to unwind on the sidelines and enjoy some fine company, including Helen Marcus. We adjourned to the Good Heifer, a friendly enough spot, my faith in club rugby fully restored, except for the complete lack of song! This was my first rugby party in a couple years, as I've been kinda busy coaching my high school lads.

On the way back into Sacramento, Kat called to say we were meeting Aruna and Paul Rosenzweig (his evaluator) in Old Sac, and the party continued to roll.

COLUSA 35 – Humboldt 7 Referee: Eric Rauscher
John Diest Field cool, breezy, had to jump fence to get to very nice pitch. (There is a gate 50 feet away)
12:40, only two Humboldt players. 1:09, four Humboldt players. Finally started the game at 1:45 after doing a quick boot check and front row talk.

This game was a good example of why teams need to show up and warm up. Colusa scored four converted tries in the first half to Humboldt’s 0.

The second half had a converted try each.

I must say that there was a sizable crowd (200-300) there. Colusa is a small town in the valley, and the team gets pretty good coverage and support by the community at large. There were old boys, spouses and kids and I assume a couple of people that just turned up to watch the match.

SHASTA 21 – Mendocino 7 Referee: Phil Akroyd
A lot of mistakes and not much flowing rugby due to errors, but we got down to one score to tie it with two minutes to go. Shasta always looked like they had the more dangerous back line, but Mendocino are much improved on previous seasons with a solid pack and their best player at #10.

Shasta scored tries through their number 6, 11 and captain, number 8, while Mendo crossed the line late in the game through winger Page.

Mendo look like they can still improve in decision making. One of the weirdest tries I have seen for a while happened when Mendo were defending a lineout on their own five, which they won. One of the half backs was surprised that he had the ball in his hands in his own in-goal, at which point the attacking scrum-half simply took the ball from his hands and fell to the ground to score.

Reno Academy – Vallejo CANCELED

REDWOOD 71 – Reno Zephyrs 17 Referee: Mike King
Reno rolled in shortly before kickoff with the requisite 15 players and got suited up promptly. They played gamely in face of the superior numbers of the better rested home side. A few early tries on great ball movement by Redwood, did lead to stiffening of defense by the Zephyrs. They went on the attack, leading to a penalty try awarded for an infraction only a meter from the try line. The half ended 27-7.

Redwood again opened up the second half by marching down for several scores, before Reno returned the favor. Reno was able to score 2 tries in the second frame, but the long journey had its telling effect on the visitors. Redwood finished with a flurry of tries with strong running and sharp handling. #10 had an excellent and near perfect day, with 9 of 10 conversions and a penalty kick.

The host side showed the true nature of the game with an excellent post match feast.

Monterey Bay 28 - SF FOG 30 Referee: Sandy Robertson
In a spirited match where the lead and momentum changed several times the Fog scored two converted tries and a penalty in the last 15 minutes to provide a buffer sufficient to withstand a last second converted try by Monterey

STANISLAUS 47 - Arroyo Grande 22 Referee: Scott Wood
TJs: Jim Mason and another Stanislaus player
Location: Christoffersen Basin, Turlock
When we arrived at the pitch, we found youth rugby in full swing. Dixon RFC and Arroyo Grande's burgeoning youth program arranged to play middle school, varsity silver and U12 matches prior to the men’s club match. While Stanislaus does not have a youth program, several club members stated they are looking to form such in the near future.

Stanislaus had a full roster whereas AG was able to cobble together only 16 players. The visitors scored quickly only to be answered by a Stanislaus try shortly thereafter. Two more converted tries by Stanislaus and a penalty goal and converted try by AG left us with a close game at halftime: 19-17 Stanislaus.

The players got the halftime message to remain on their feet or quickly get out of the way. The penalty count dropped and the teams played multi-phase ball. Missed opportunities and turnovers left AG on its heels as Stanislaus opened up the game. At one point, the home team stitched together several phases of switches and misdirection to open gaps in AG's defenses. A fine afternoon to spend running around a relatively comfortable pitch.

SAN BRUNO SAINTS by forfeit over Paso Robles

SOUTH VALLEY 27 – San Bruno Saints 10 Referee: Sam Davis
Both teams came to play at this 6:30 PM under-the-lights game. I have had the opportunity to see both teams a number of times this year. They are familiar with my game and have improved steadily this year. This, my third, was the best game of the day. South Valley scored first with a multi-phase movement that ended putting it down in the corner. They capitalized on a penalty and added 3 more points. The first half ended with South Valley 8 Saints 0. From the second half kickoff the Saint’s #9 slipped by a few tackles and ran 85 meters to score in the corner. South Valley came back and put 14 points on the board before the Saints added another 3 from penalty. South Valley put the last score on the board final score SV27 SB 10. All in all a great day of rugby

CALIFORNIA 106 – UC Davis 0 Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
ARs: Riches Anderson and Boyer
#4: Donal Walsh
Evaluator: Paul Rosenzweig

Week 2 of the College Premier Division (CPD) featured NorCal rivals. After watching the first half of the Wales v Ireland 6N match at Chieftain’s Irish Pub in SF, National Performance Reviewer Paul Rosenzweig (from Chicago) and I drove to Jesuit HS in Carmichael on a sunny 65F day featuring many high school supporters. Cal scored 10 tries in the first half to lead 66-0 and 6 more in the second half for a total of 16 tries. As the score indicates, Cal was dominant in every facet, but UC Davis' captain (fullback) provided some valiant resistance including a near drop-goal. Much thanks to Rich, Rich, and Donal for their help and Paul for his feedback. It was also fun meeting up with Rich Anderson, Kat-Todd Schwartz, and Ray Schwartz at a dive bar in old town Sacramento on the way back.

Seconds: CALIFORNIA 74 - UC Davis 0 Referee: Rich Anderson
ARs: Boyers Rich and Tristan
Evaluator: Kat Todd-Schwartz

St. Mary's – San Jose State CANCELED

STANFORD 34 – Chico State 15 Referee: Lee Johnson (RFU –North Midlands)
Lee Johnson’s wife is from Pleasanton and they visit here about once a year. This was Lee’s first trip where he coordinated some games while on vacation; he’ll be working at St. Mary’s next Saturday.

We should keep our fingers crossed: he’s awaiting a green card and would like to join us in Pelicanland permanently.

Seconds: Stanford 22 – CHICO STATE 36 Referee: Bruce Carter
This was my second game of the day, as I had done a game involving the CSU women’s team in Santa Cruz in the morning.

Until Chico State scored the final two times in the match, the game had always been within one score of a lead change. The points ratcheted up as the teams traded trys.

It was a lot of fun. Both teams had some fast guys who need only master some more of the finer points to play in the first fifteen.

Santa Clara 19 – SACRAMENTO STATE 61 Referee: Bruce Ricard
The game started between two teams of comparable level. Santa Clara was dominating the first 15 minutes by keeping the ball while camping in Sacramento's half. But after a long moment in their 22's, including a missed penalty kick, a Sacramento's 3/4 intercepted the ball, and ran to score the first try of the game on a counter attack. Everything was going smoothly, but both forwards and backs of both team were often off-side at rucks, so at the 20th minute, I called both captains and asked them to manage that. Sacramento completely stopped being off-side at rucks, but Santa-Clara still a little. At the 40th minute, 5m from Santa Clara's goal line, their number 13 was caught off-side at ruck. After a try was scored by Sacramento under the advantage, I temporarily excluded the center, watched the conversion kick, and ended the first half on a score of 0 to 38.

At the 10th minute of the second period, as I was almost asking the sin bin to come back, I had to exclude another player from the same team again for off-side at ruck, and told the captain that I would have to change the color if this infringement continued to happen. But 7 minutes later, the whole defense was off-side at ruck, and I had to send off the captain, who was the most off-side. I told the new captain that it would be red for each new infringement of this kind, and I didn't get any "obvious" off-side from this team.

Even if they played the whole second half with 14 (or 13) players, Santa Clara did a good job, scoring tries 3 times, but defending was too hard with one player less, Sacramento scored 4 times.

Final score: Santa Clara University 19 - 61 Sacramento State

Seconds: SANTA CLARA – Sacramento State Referee: Ed Mortlock

MARITIME ACADEMY 52 – Nevada 11 Referee: Cary Bertolone

A really nice, sunny day and Nevada kicked off at 1:00 PM. Cal-Maritime built a platform and mauled their way up field for over 40 meters and eventually led to a penalty kick for a 3-0 lead. Nevada came back and tied it, but it started going pretty much Cal-Maritime's way after that. They scored three tries, missing all of the conversions, but having an 18-3 lead at the half. Nevada had some long runs from their speedy centers, but didn't have the support to put it in at the end.

In the second half, Cal-Maritime's forwards became dominant and they started scoring tries, one after another. Nevada had a try and two more "almost tries", but knock-ons on the 2 meter line stopped them. One funny play was upon a penalty against Cal-Maritime, Nevada's captain, #6 Eric, took a quick tap and ran up the back of a retiring player, pushing him all the way through Cal-Maritime's line of defense, allowing him to run a good 40 meters more, setting up their only try. Clean game with no punches or high tackles; a class act from both sides.

FRESNO STATE 70 - U. of the Pacific 5 Referee: Jeff Jury

SIERRA JC 90 - Francisco State 0 Referee: Don Pattalock
Sierra is a complete team. I did my wind sprints for the month.

SIERRA JC 2nds over Sierra Foothills Ref: Pattalock
Enjoyable cross town matchup.

Santa Rosa JC over USF via forfeit

SANTA CLARA women 15 – Humboldt State 13 Referee: Chris Fisher

UC Santa Cruz women 5 – CHICO STATE 51 Referee: Bruce Carter
Although the Santa Cruz harbor below sustained $17 million in damages the day before from the tsunami, the East Remote pitch perched atop a perfect spring day. This probably only heightened the heartbreak of those boat-owners who would certainly have otherwise been asea this fine day.

This repeatedly-rain-delayed match kicked off and the home Slugs delighted the crowd with a well-worked try on the left wing to take the early lead.

The fine weather provided most of the rest of any delights the fans might have had as Chico State pretty much had their way from that point on.

San Jose Seahawks – All Blues Referee: Norm Boccone
Not sure what happened here. Norm jumped in after the game was only noticed to the NCRRS the day before the match.

STANFORD BUSINESS SCHOOL 55 – McGeorge 17 Referee: Bruce Ricard


ELSIE ALLEN 59 – Montgomery 10 Referee: Sean Peters

JV: ELSIE ALLEN 24 – Montgomery/Santa Rosa 17 Referee: Mike King
A thoroughly enjoyable contest between 2 sides filled with enthusiastic newer players to the game. Elsie’s side was more organized due in part to the combination of players from the other two programs. They moved to an early 10-0 lead to be pared by a late converted try by Montgomery/Rosa before half. Elsie again stretched its margin, only to see the visitors come back with some late scoring.


JESUIT 67 – Christian Brothers 7 Referee: Scott Wood

Location: Jesuit High School, Carmichael
Jesuit scored seemingly at will. They exploited CB's backline by moving the ball quickly to the outside. Halftime score: 45-0.

The second half featured much of the same. CB's defenses at the breakdown were thwarted by tackle (entry) and ruck (offside/side entry) offenses. The visitors never gave up and earned a converted try at full time.


JV: LAMORINDA 39 - Piedmont 22 Referee: Sam Davis
Sat was a rugby day I started out at Mills College with the Lamo vs Pits JV match very good rugby for this level of play PITS agreed to match Lamo in field strength since they did not have 15 players turn up. It was a high scoring game with both teams having a wide variety of skill level on the field at any one time. Lamo’s captain #10 wanted to play two positions Standoff and Referee but finely settled for standoff. The end of the first half it was Lamo 22, Pits 17. The second half lady luck and skill Lamo extended their lead two more trys than Pit was able to put on the board. With the final score 39-22 great game on the field Lamo JV was disappointing off the field as their sportsmanship needs to improve.

I had the opportunity to watch the Berkeley HS girls vs Pits girls game. We had a new referee a great lady named “Raney” she did a great job and I hope we will see more of her on the field in the future.

Varsity: LAMORINDA 43 - PITS 22 Referee: Sam Davis
A very fun game to referee. My man of the match was Lamo’s captain! He converted 5 of the 6 conversion kicks and a penalty kick along leading his team to a great on and off field victory. PITS in a rebuilding year there is some good talent that need a few more games under their belt and they should pull it together.

It was off to Morgan Hill to referee my third game, the South Valley vs San Bruno Saints.

ELSIE ALLEN GIRLS 12 – Davis 10 Referee: Sean Peters

LIVE OAK 15 – Silicon Valley 12 Referee: Chris Fisher

SAN MATEO 36 – Bellarmine 6 Ref: Fisher

Frosh-Soph: DE LA SALLE 27 – Berkeley RFC 17 Referee: John Fouts
Played under the lights at De La Salle, The Spartans rucked hard and ran harder to a 22-5 half time lead. Berkeley took it up a notch in the second half and really owned the rucks for the rest of the game outscoring DLS 12-5. Great young men, wonderful rugby and a final score of DLS 27 - Berkeley 17.


MOTHER LODE Girls 22 - Shawnigan Lake 19 Ref: Ray Schwartz
Sunday afternoon, Crista McAuliffe Park, Cameron Park
TJs: Mark Godfrey & black-eyed Mother Lode halfback

In stark contrast to my Saturday, Sunday was dark and chilly, and the field was more like a bog, tucked up against the freeway, but two spirited sides had gathered, so play on! In my pregame chat with the Shawnigan forwards (all cute young Canadian ladies), the funniest little thing happened.

The fiesty little #2 asked question after question. I turned to her teammates more than once and asked, "Does she always do this?" and got the positive nod from them all. This little sprite seemed to speak for them all, and wanted to drain my brain. One thing was particularly of interest, she asked about "anchoring." Once she explained to me what on earth she was talking about, latching on the tackled teammate on the deck (rather than rucking), I explained to her that any and all form of bridging, diving, sealing off, and anchoring is not on… that the game will be played by players on their feet, driving through the ruck.

She insisted it was legal in Canada, but I assured her otherwise. When your team advances to the provincial playoffs you'll eventually run into a ref sophisticated enough to call you on it. Drive, don't dive, and don't be supported in anyway by those on the deck... I left it at that and turned to a far briefer pre-game chat with Mother Lode.

But was soon interrupted by Mark Hall, the Shawnigan coach who had just marched the length of the pitch to share that he was certain I had it wrong, offering that anchoring is standard practice across British Columbia, and so I should permit it. I assured him, we all play under the same IRB Laws, and kindly sent him on his way.

Great game, lots of fun, highly competitive, and no anchoring. Turns out this #2 and her captain, #7, both diminutive and fearless, were two of the most technically proficient ruckers I'd ever seen. But they couldn't weather the team effort Mother Lode threw at them. Though Shawnigan was up 12-10 at the half, and Mother Lode was playing everyone off their bench, ML pulled away to win a close one. Shawnigan would move on to Davis, then Alameda, before heading south to the Happiest Place on Earth, the Fullerton International Youth Tournament!

I was very impressed with the potential. I suspect several ladies on both sides will enjoy long rugby careers, and hopefully at the all-star level.

On the phone the next day with Rugby Alberta's own Don Whidden, Don confirmed he knew Mark Hall (a very good egg), but admitted that Canadians are prone to making stuff up! In Alberta "anchoring" is called "latching" and yes, though coaches coach it, refs certainly should penalize it. Don assured me we do indeed all play under the exact same Laws. I got to move to the head of the class! He, in turn, will do his best to send a handful of refs down to Morgan Hill for the PCIT April 29-May 1st.


Varsity: BISHOP O'DOWD 43 - Alameda 0 Referee Eric Rauscher
Under the lights, decent crowd, available at the Bishop O'Dowd website. (they are starting to tape all of their games and make them available).

Alameda played with spirit and speed, but just could not match BOD's skill as a team. Not a lot of penalties, some decent rugby to boot.

Always a joy to do a game at BOD.

This fantastic image is courtesy of David Barpal of David Barpal Photography:

The Most Irish Referee in the World is Larry Ramey of the Eastern Rockies Society, working at the Kick-Off Tournament in January.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris

Wednesday, March 09, 2011




We barely have enough referees to cover all of the first-side matches scheduled for the next three weeks. Another referee was injured this weekend – another hole in the schedule each week going forward. And another referee no-show last weekend.

We are only able to cover March 12 because: two games have already been canceled and two referees happen to be visiting. Otherwise your assigner would be in the position of selecting a league match not to receive a referee.

We have been assigning brand-new referees to meaningful games. Not their fault. It’s either that or – no referee.

It’s tight for March 19 – we are saved by having three visiting refs. But again, ‘saved’ means we can cover only the first-side matches.

It is even worse for March 26: 16 refs for 26 games. The first-side games cannot all be assigned at this point.

April availability is now requested. We need twenty+ refs the first three weekends and then it falls off fast. PLEASE SEND IN AVAILABILITY FOR APRIL 2, 9 AND 16.

Here are specific and dire needs:
March 26 Chico
April 2 Humboldt

What is particularly frustrating: we have a number of ‘new refs’ who don’t seem to be available to do games. YOU CAN DO A GAME EVERY SATURDAY IF YOU JUST SAY THE WORD. There at least thirty-one people who will be over-joyed that you can rugby happen.

Something will have to give for next season. Referees need to be able to do two first-side matches in the same day, meaning some teams play in the morning and some teams play at 3 or 4 PM, or if everyone insists that all rugby games have to occur at 1 PM, then a sizable percentage of them will need to be on Sundays.

We rejoice at canceled games. Because of canceled games, we can just manage one Saturday until those games are rescheduled, knocking the problem on to another weekend.


The regular Society monthly meeting will be held at the SFGG clubhouse from 7-9 this evening. Please make every effort to attend. Dave Williamson’s programs are informative and the presenters are accomplished.


Humboldt Girls U19 – Bishop O’Dowd Local ref
Humboldt State 5 – SIERRA COLLEGE 27 Referee: Rich Anderson
Humboldt 10 – SHASTA 12 Referee: John Coppinger
HUMBOLDT STATE women 12 – San Francisco BATS 0 Ref: Anderson

Report by Rich Anderson:
John Coppinger and I had the pleasure to travel together up to Humboldt for perhaps the 10th time over our playing and officiating careers.

In that time, we have flown in Puddle Jumpers (which caused 8am Scotch nerve calmers) and had the CHP detour us through Marijuana fields when 101 was closed. Every time I pick up John at 4am, seeing him bright-eyed and eager to travel, I know what a lucky woman his wife, Liz, is.

A quick stop to Peete's Coffee in Santa Rosa, and the trek begins, as does the rain. There are 4 matches scheduled on this day, but we already know we won't make the first because of the weather, Humboldt U19 Girls v Bishop O'Dowd (who smartly traveled up the night before from Oakland). There was a player from the Humboldt women's team who took the Level 1 course and took on the match. As we arrived around half-time, we could see what a fine job she was doing. Afterwards, we let her know that while playing is always fun, it’s hard to match the travel, money and acclaim that goes with Referring. It is our hope that she sticks with it anyway.

My first match, in the rain, was Humboldt State versus Sierra JC. Although Sierra dominated the match (27-5), their side-lines decided that they could better influence the match and referee with many loud and useful tips. Once I reminded the Sierra scrum half that I played under John Tyler for many years, and my ear-drums were severely damaged, things calmed down a bit. One exchange of note occurred at half, when the Sierra #8 was asking me to watch the Humboldt throws in the line out. He was concerned that they weren't straight. He was a confused when I reminded him that he had stolen nearly every opposing line out. Maybe it was the rain.

John's match, featuring the Humboldt's men club, was saved from being a tie by a last second conversion in the mud. That would have been a costly miss for John.

The final match has the Humboldt Women versus SF State Bats. Humboldt #8 dominated the scoring, 2 tries and a conversion for a 12-0 win, in the rain.

The remainder of the trip featured a night in Arcada, dinner and a few beverages, John waking up in the morning with his clothes muddy, and rain. With the 10th Humboldt trip in the books, we need to discuss if there will be a #11.

John’s side of the story:
Saturday (3/5), aka Rainday, on the Lost Coast.
Shasta 12, Humboldt Old Growth, 10. Humboldt went out early but Shasta fought their way back to trail 10-5 with minutes to go and rucked and mauled to the Humboldt five meter line. One of the Humboldt players cynically played the ball on the ground at a ruck and earned a yellow card for his efforts. Shasta crashed over the try line to score just to the right of the posts and the conversion with 30 seconds left made Shasta the winner on a rainy day on the Lost Coast. Given the conditions, a well-played match.

I ran AR for Rich Anderson's matches that preceded and followed my match and we were both totally soaked and frozen after a long day and a long way from home.


Claremont College 27 – CENTRAL WASHINGTON 44 Referee: Phil Akroyd
This was a real performance of two halves from CW. After going up comfortably at half time, they seemed to shut off and pay for it in the second half.

The venue was one that a lot of refs would have been jealous of. If you ever get a chance to visit the Claremont campus, do it. The grass field is huge, flat, well lined (with red lines) and firm and the weather was sunny and 75 degrees before kickoff, pushing 80 during the game.

I had two A/Rs (Footie and Conrad, from SoCal) and a #4 (Woody from Claremont) who performed exceptionally. We kicked off and the first ten minutes were at a furious pace. With legs burning and sweat starting to emerge, CW played to the predicted script and put pressure all over the home team. They scored a try after 3 minutes, a PK after 14 and ran in a further three tries before half. Infuriatingly for Claremont, they gave their tries up easily by shooting their own ball out of the back of the ruck on two occasions. CW ran through, cleaned up and ran in for easy points under the post. To make things worse, Claremont were pushed into touch just inches short and knocked on over the try line. In the second half, they were also held up over the line.

The second half signaled the change around. Claremont came out hard, as if a new set of batteries had been installed. While attacking, an inexperienced full-back from Washington panicked and tripped the ball carrier, resulting in an easy yellow card. Interestingly, CW slotted two penalty kicks while they were down to fourteen when they could have taken more bold attacking moves.

Claremont continued while CW continued to cruise and get lazy. They failed to respond to earlier requests and warnings from me to retreat fully to the back foot, resulting in two quick yellows for repeat team offences. The second came at the very next ruck after the first was issued. I guess some players don’t take instruction well.

Claremont scored a couple of tries while they were one/two men up, but it never appeared as though CW were in real trouble. The teams scored five tries each but Washington nailed many of their conversions and three penalty kicks, making the winning difference.


O CLUB ALUMNI 24 – Silverhawks 7 Referee: Sean Peters
San Jose Silverhawks vs The Olympic Old Boys, this one was a fun and great game to ref and watch. It was the making of a “classic” old boy match, hard hitting, grudge holding, cheap-shot "I didn’t do that ref” fun game. First half Olympic Old Boys made an attack from their big forward pack scoring the first try. 7-0, then the Olympic Old Boys scored again before half. Off a penalty, that was awarded inside the 22 meter the Silverhawks, determined to score, saw their fly-half sneak in a try before the half making it 12-7.

The second half was more hair-pulling / toupee-tossing/Bengay-applying, with big tackles from both teams. The Olympic Old Boys back line with some subs, came in the second half. They started opening the game up from their outside center and wing, putting up another two trys before it was done.

Great day for rugby in San Francisco, last weekend snow, this week sunny and warm sky.

Thank you for one of my most fun games to ref. A big thank you goes to the Silver-hawks and the Olympic club for hosting this match.

O Club 2 – Stanford Business Referee: Bruce Ricard
No report received.

OLYMPIC CLUB 27 – Glendale 24 Referee: Paul Bretz
Very intense game.

SACRAMENTO CAPITALS 40 – Barbarians 10 Referee: Chris Tucker
Beautiful day in Sacramento at Danny Nunn for a game played in good spirit by both sides. A little early friction was quieted down with a penalty either way (high tackle vs. no-wrap) and the teams settled down to play. Capitals were too organised for the Barbarians, scoring 6 tries (only 1 missed conversion) although the visitors did earn a consolation try mid-way through the second half.

Seconds: SAC CAPITALS 46 – Barbarians 5 Referee: ‘Jimmy’
Refereed very competently by Jimmy, a Barbarians coach. While the score was approximate he did a nice job of managing the game while I brown-bagged a beer on the sidelines (in the absence of a brown bag, the GMGs worked pretty well!) After about 20 mins, the 1st side Capitals captain asked me if the Barbarians winger was allowed to wear his ankle monitor during the game. Yes, there it was on his right ankle, making sure he wasn't getting in any trouble -- he's on the wing, how could he? I said it's probably not approved by the IRB, but at least he's got something constructive to do for an hour and a half, and that he should address his concerns to the referee...

EPA BULLDOGS 25 – San Mateo 10 Referee: John Pohlman
Asst. Referee Stephen Moore and T.J. San Mateo supporter
EPA Bulldogs hosted San Mateo at Ronald McNair Field in East Palo Alto. The large and festive audience was treated to a very competitive hard hitting game. This is the field EPA has used frequently. Pretty bare and small. It would have been nice to referee these two teams on a regulation quality rugby pitch.

EPA won the toss and chose to kick. The game started a bit sloppy. Numerous dropped balls led to a high scrum count. The field being small and the players being large allowed for little space and loads of pressure from the defenses.

San Mateo #13 Peter Maola slotted a penalty at 6 minutes.

EPA 12, captain Jack Halalilo scored his first of twenty points for the day with a successful penalty kick.

The rest of the half saw the ball handling improve with lots of opportunities but strong defense kept the game tied until EPA #7 Laumanu Paongo finished a forward pick and drive sequence.

Half Time score EPA 8 San Mateo 3.

Captain Jack added three more points to EPA with a penalty 6 minutes in. EPA was finally able to create some space for their backs and Captain Jack scored his first try of the day.

San Mateo scrum Half Tevita Finau scored a bang-bang try three minutes later. This was scored after a couple of penalties to EPA and quick taps taken by San Mateo. As Finau grounded the ball tacklers converged and the ball bounced making it look like a knock-on. But the ball had already been grounded. This was at the 53rd minute.

The last try of the day was again scored again by #12 Captain Jack Halalilo at the 74th minute. In between were more opportunities turned back by some furious tackling.

Final score: EPA 25 San Mateo 10
This was a fun game to referee due to the level of play from both teams. Thanks for a lovely run.

Seconds: EPA BULLDOGS 12 – San Mateo 5 Referee: Stephen Moore
AR: John Pohlman
Solid clean game. Well played by both sides.

EPA Razorbacks 10 – SACRAMENTO LIONS 40 Referee: Preston Gordon
Terman Park, Palo Alto, 1330
Sacramento managed to sweep aside any serious challenge to their winning this game, despite 3 yellow cards (the second 4 minutes after the first). The lopsided score doesn't reflect the nature of the game though - the Razorbacks had their share of possession and weren't afraid to use it. Sacramento was able to finish more of their opportunities, however.

Seconds: EPA Razorbacks 7 – SAC LIONS 21 Referee: A Player

DIABLO GAELS 24 – Seahawks 11 Referee: Rob Hendrickson
This was my first assignment out to Vallejo's Morton Field, and I was pleasantly surprised to find a hidden gem in the form of a dedicated grass pitch, professionally lined, with goal posts, sideline barriers, spectator seating and everything. The Seahawks struck first, and went out to an early lead after a penalty goal and unconverted try, and after the Gaels scored an 80 yard breakaway try under the posts, the score at half time was 11 - 10, Seahawks. The Gaels were more persistent in the second half, scoring two converted tries after sustained drives to pull ahead and win 24 - 11. Really good D II rugby by both sides.

CHICO 39 – Marin 25 Referee: Phil Ulibarri
The trip from Reno to Susanville to Chester then on to California Highway 32 drops you right into Chico and only about 5 minutes from Pleasant Valley High School. The pitch was in good order and both teams were ready to go over an hour in advance. It was a great contest from the opening whistle with cleanly contested rucks and some good passing to the wings from both sides. Marin had most the pressure on in the first half scoring a converted try but missing two penalty kicks. Chico initiated a beautiful pop kick resulting in a try near the end of the first half and took an 11 – 8 lead into the break.

In the second half Chico ran four converted tries over the line due to some lackluster defense on the wing; one try came from a Marin restart with at least three clean passes from Chico as they sliced through the right side of Marin’s fifteen. Had Marin made good on the penalties and kept Chico from the easy score, it would have been a one-point game. As it was, Chico came out on top 39-25.

Seconds: Chico 0 – MARIN 5 Ref: Ulibarri
With many of the players and the ref doubling up for the second match, it was decided to run 20’s instead of full halves. Both sides brought on some new talent and the game was run with some really solid defense, albeit at a slower pace from everyone. Marin scored an easy try on the right side early in the first half.

A very light sprinkle brought a little moisture in the second half of the match, but it had no effect on play. The second stanza was scoreless.

SFGG COLTS 17 – BA Baracus 13 Referee: Cary Bertolone
Saturday at Treasure Island, kick-off at 1:00 pm (my third match of the weekend), Golden Gate wasted little time with an interception by the outside center and a quick 7 points for the early lead. Golden Gate controlled the rucks and had a lot of possession early on, but Baracus started exerting some of their power and scored a try to even things up. Golden Gate had one penalty after another, received one yellow, giving Baracus three attempts at the post, but they only cashed in with one made in the first half for a 10-7 halftime lead.

The backs of both teams were cheating up on the line of scrimmage towards the end of the half and the beginning of the second half, so I tried to clean that up. A few penalties later, it cost Golden Gate 3 more points. The game was pretty even for 20 more minutes and then Golden Gate smashed in a try to close the score to 13-12. It stayed that way until 5 minutes from full time when the team in green scored a well-deserved corner try for the lead. Baracus took it back down towards their try zone, but were held. They had an easy penalty kick, but passed on it as they were down by 4. The GG took possession of the ball on the 5 meter line and with Baracus being offside in the backs for three consecutive phases, that Golden Gate kept taking advantage of (didn't have to blow the whistle), the game ended with Golden Gate getting a hard fought win 17-13. Close game, played a bit sloppy, but with a lot of effort from both clubs!

Seconds: Golden Gate 44 – Baracus 2nds 0 Referee: Ewan Lithgow
Ewen Lithgow took the whistle and reffed his official first game and did a great job as Golden Gate controlled the match for most of the phases and won 44-0. A lot of hard rugby; another day of a great city rivalry.

SANTA ROSA 79 – Berkeley 7 Referee: Tony Levitan
AR: Dave Ellis
Evaluator: Mike Malone
A beautiful afternoon turned overcast with a bit of a sprinkle, but that change in environment did nothing to dampen the enthusiasm of our two sides playing out a Division II match in Santa Rosa. After a hard-fought opening 20 minutes, Santa Rosa had their way with Berkeley in just about every facet of the game. Challenged with a notably less experienced side -- though girded in their effort by some seasoned vets -- Berkeley was under attack most of the match and yielded too many "track meet" tries to stay competitive.

Santa Rosa's dominant scrum play, active loose forwards, and well-coordinated backline saw them dot down 5 tries (3 converted) in the opening half, while Berkeley got on the board with under 2 minutes to play via a penalty try awarded for repeated infringement on Berkeley's quick tap attempts near the goal line. 31-7 at the break.

In the second half Santa Rosa ran almost at will, putting over another 8 tries (4 conversions). Berkeley's line-out play was probably the best part of their game in this match, reliably producing quality ball that allowed the backline to run and often run well. Unfortunately, their long gains were too often followed by turn-overs and more dynamic running rugby by Santa Rosa. Final tally, 79-7. Special thanks to Dave Ellis for running touch and offering the odd half-time and line-out check-in along the way.

FRESNO 63 – Vacaville 22 Referee: Jeff Jury

Mendocino 7 – COLUSA 12 Referee: Bjorn Stumer
California is basically hill country, and the hills were beautifully green and full of spring flowers on my drive up to Ukiah, in Mendocino County. Credit should be given to both sides for putting together Rugby clubs in small towns far from the action, and for presenting both sides handsomely kitted out and ready to go well before kickoff time. The two teams were pretty well matched, with Mendocino appearing at first the fittest one. The Colusa lads however came out firing on all cylinders and did not stop for the full 80 minutes of the match. Colusa, long a presence in the California Rugby scene, is back after an eight years absence. You would have not thought them a newer side though, because they approached the match with gusto, if not with finesse. Your writer is old enough to remember that rucks & mauls were never the strength of US Rugby, but how have times changed. The whole match, played with a soft pitch underfoot, was nothing but fast moving effective mauls and quick rucks. Although keeping all on side proved a challenge, the match remained free-flowing throughout.

Mendocino is a well-coached outfit which showed skill and pace, but they had a battle on their hands in containing a combative Colusa side, determined not to mar their unscarred record. The skill of the hosts was matched by the power of Colusa, and the first half closed with a converted try per team. The second half could have gone either way, as Mendocino ably deflected the repeated assaults thrown at them by Colusa. Ultimately Colusa broke through, and defended the score until the final whistle. Final Score Mendocino 7 (7) - Colusa 12 (7). Overall a scrappy, but fun affair enjoyed by all. Also enjoyed was the third half hosted by the Mendocino coach at his fine country spread. The fellowship harked back to simpler Rugby times and your referee, as probably all involved, thought this a good day.

VALLEJO 71 – Reno Zephyrs 35 Referee: No-show
The two teams agreed upon an un-named volunteer referee and agreed that the result will stand.

Redwood – Reno Academy CANCELED

Paso Robles 5 – MONTEREY BAY 52 Referee: Eric Rauscher
On the drive down I listened to Paul Butterfield, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Nirvana and Neil Young. The way back was more Neil, Decemberists, Velvet Underground and Bob Dylan. Getting to the pitch was a Field of Dreams kind of experience. You drive out through an agricultural area and then arrive at the end of a dirt road at a very nice pitch. It was a bit dry, but a great place none the less. They actually have access to 3 fields and are thinking about a little tournament there. The game was pretty much what I expected. This was one of Paso Robles first game as a team. While this is Monterey Bays' first year as a team (after a lapse of five or six years), it is actually two teams combined into one (Monterey and Aptos). The play was enjoyed by both teams and therefore I enjoyed the game also.

Two players stood out to me, one from each team. Paso Robles' #5 (Mark Ancli) had a great work rate and seemed to be always involved in the play. Monterey Bays' #12 (Lui Ma'aola) scored at least three tries, breaking through tackles right and left.

With more games under their belt, Paso Robles will make a fine team.

Arroyo Grande 12 – SOUTH VALLEY 75 Referee: Tom Zanarini
A beautiful day in Arroyo Grande. Sunny skies and tri-tip on the grill. AR had a youth match directly before the men's game. Good to see the game growing down the ranks. On the same note, South Valley is a men's club formed AFTER a youth rugby club, a definite plus. The match was pretty one sided. AR had trouble finding motivation and played pretty flat.

A special thank you goes out to my wife, Colleen, who saw fit to allow me to referee on her birthday weekend, just so long as we did it some place nice. San Luis Obispo is always some place nice.

If you get scheduled to do Arroyo Grande and want to stay in SLO, my recommendations are: Ramada Inn on Olive St. $64 a night with AAA. Dinner: Novo on Higurea or Kobrel at Blue on Monterey. Kinda pricey, but if your with your significant other it'll put you in good graces. Breakfast/Brunch: Big Sky Cafe on Broad St. And if you need new running shoes, Running Warehouse's showroom and distribution center is on Suburban Rd. (parallel to Tank Farm Road) and has a massive selection.

Saints 15 – STANISLAUS 19 Referee: Same Davis
It was a physical game between the Harlots and the Saints the Harlots, won 19-15.

Fog – Samoa United CANCELED

UC Davis 10 – ST. MARY’S 52 Referee: Joe Androvich
ARs: Jim Crenshaw, Donal Walsh
Assessor: Kat Todd-Schwartz
No report received. Score from the Internet.

Seconds: UC Davis – St. Mary's Referee: Jim Crenshaw
No report received.

Santa Clara 13 –CHICO STATE 22 Referee: Sandy Robertson
Chico pressured Santa Clara from the start but weren't able to score until midway into the first half. In the second half Santa Clara came back but Chico's 4th try of the match gave the visitors breathing room and a hard fought win.

Seconds: Santa Clara –CHICO STATE Referee: Chris Fisher
Chico State B a big winner of Santa Clara B on Saturday. My pen ran out of ink. Since it was only a B side I let it go.

SACRAMENTO STATE 17 – Stanford 14 Referee: Scott Wood
ARs: Lee Salgado, Tom Franzoia
No report received. Score from the Internet.

Seconds: SACRAMENTO STATE 34 – Stanford 10 Referee: Rich Boyer
AR: Lee Salgado; TJ: Tom Franzoia
Stanford had a number of "newbies" playing in their first or second game while Sac State had the size. Sac State used their forwards to their advantage, which set up overlaps in the backline.

Stanford got better as the game went on and scored their trys in the second half. This team will get better as they become more seasoned.

Sac State has numbers and replaced nearly the entire team at halftime.

It was nice seeing Dante Walters, whom I coached at Christian Bros., play flanker with reckless abandon and score a try.

Both sides were good natured and exceedingly polite.

A big thank you to Lee Salgado and Tom Franzoia for running touch.

Fresno State 0 – UC SANTA CRUZ 61 Referee: James Hinkin
With monsoonesque rain apparently slashing down on the Pacific coast the UCSC/Fresno St game was moved inland to Fresno. So I hopped in my car and arrived in Fresno with a packed kit bag and an interesting collection of low flying Central California insects on my windshield. After paperwork was duly inspected and stern words were had with the front rows and captains, we kicked off on a gorgeous 65 degree winter day.

From the opening whistle UCSC came out flying and won an immediately penalty at the breakdown. They didn’t leave the Fresno 22 until they had scored a try. Fresno seemed to have no response to the pick and go tactics around the breakdowns and soon gave up a couple of more tries. Fresno settled down, however, and the middle 20 minutes of the half produced exciting back and forth rugby. Fresno had several deep, penetrating attacks but lacked the finishing touch as UCSC always seemed to scramble back in time. Towards the end of the half UCSC started regaining their earlier momentum and after Fresno was reduced to 14 while their #7 sat on the sideline contemplating his sins they put a 4th try in for the half.

The second half was a mirror of the first as UCSC alternated periods of dominance with Fresno rallies, but Fresno was never able to complete their moves. A front row injury brought on subs for Fresno that were having difficulty with the Slug scrum and turned that phase into a lobsided contest. With 20 minutes to go #7 Justin Andrews completed his hat trick and 10 minutes later tried for 4 as he chased a kick and jumped on the loose ball... about a meter short. No matter. After a weak clearance the UCSC lineout delivered clean ball and the inevitable try was scored under the posts.

Fresno tackled bravely and made some impressive runs but didn’t have the support or nous to finish them off. UCSC created their own chances and took the ones that were gifted them well in an all-around performance. Special mention must go to the captains on the day Mike Rinaudo (UCSC) and JP Salvador (Fresno St) and the coaching staffs as both sides were well drilled, followed instructions and refrained from any dirty play.

U. of the Pacific 5 – NEVADA 24 Referee: JC Van Staden
AR: Ron Decausemaker
Carrying a calf injury from Friday night did not help my cause, but my 4 yr old offered to bring me water anytime I need some, and for that I booted up with high spirits. Nevada opened the scoring with a converted try. UOP, showing some good plays made it across the field a few times, but after losing one of their star players, allowed Nevada to score 2 more times and take control of the game. A second wind came up for UOP after their captain exploited some midfield defense, and after 65 min, UOP was on the board as well. Nevada did not let them go, and managed to fit in one more converted try to put their seal on a dominant game by the visitors.

San Jose State 7 – MARITIME ACADEMY 20 Referee: Pete Smith
ARs: Bruce Carter, Ben Bravo
(Score approximate from the AR. Three trys and a penalty kick definitely. One conversion?)
These two teams were undefeated in league play prior to kickoff. At the half SJS was ahead 7-3.

Matter of fact, they were still ahead with about ten minutes left. That’s when CMA scored a penalty try because the last defender laid on the tackle a foot from the goal-line with three on-rushing attackers looking to pick the ball up and move it ten inches forward.

Once the dam breaks comes the deluge. Two more trys were scored on the left wing in quick succession.

Seconds: San Jose State 22 – Maritime Academy 22 Referee: Bruce Carter
ARs: Pete Smith, Ben Bravo
Something seems to be wrong with my scorecard – it shows the same total for each team.

Referees lose notional credibility with their peers in ‘allowing’ mutual scores to occur. But when two teams are as evenly matched as these eager understudies, I feel privileged to have been in their midst facilitating a safe, fair and fast contest whatever the outcome.

It was good to see two old friends after too many years: Steve Hiatt, now coaching the Maritime Academy; and Paddy Shrimpton, visiting from Houston, who founded the CMA rugby program.

U. of San Francisco 35 –SAN FRANCISCO STATE 40 Referee: Mike King
This rivalry match-up played on Treasure Island was a barn-burner involving 2 very aggressive and intense sides. The intensity level was measured by a heated verbal discussion between the SF State try scorer and the USF defender after the very first try. For a while the sides tried attacking directly at the opposition, but the defenses held fairly well on the first phase. USF became effective with its #10 kicking for territory for a while, until State’s #15 began mounting a counter-attack. He scored a nifty kick ahead and gathered the ball himself, to score in open field play.

As the match continued, the players seem to tire some and the penalty count increased, more for the Gators than USF. State was issued a couple yellow cards for its repeated misconduct. They were however, even able to score shorthanded. USF was not willing to give up and persisted to bring the match to within 5 points- greatly aided by #10’s goal-kicking. A USF lineout at State’s 22 was stolen by the Gators and brought the final whistle. This exciting contest came down to the last very play. Both teams deserve to be proud of their excellent effort.

Sac State women 5 – UC SANTA CRUZ 46 Referee: Lee Salgado
Referee Coach: Scott Wood
No report received. Score from the coaching report.

California women 24 – Chico State 24 Referee: John Fouts
No report received. Score from the Internet.

NEVADA women 24 – Santa Clara 13 Referee: Don Pattalock
TJs: N. Jones, Michelle
A great game that went back and forth, 3 lead changes with the result in doubt until the 70th minute.

TUESDAY, March 8:
SFGG Colts 20 – Belgrano AC (Buenos Aires) 20 Referee: John Coppinger
ARs: Preston Gordon, Stephanie Bruce
Not unexpectedly, Belgrano came out aggressively attacking and playing to the edge of the law and were definitely trying to get under the skin of SF/GG, which they did. A chippy and scrappy match with many appeals to the referee from both sides about the many felonies committed by the other side. 2 yellow cards towards the end of the first half (dangerous tackle and the ensuing retaliation) settled things down for a while (although two more yellow cards were given in the second half for persistent violations). With two minutes left and Belgrano attacking along the tram line in the SF/GG red zone, SF/GG, playing a man down because of one the second half yellow cards, absorbed repeated phases of Belgrano attack only to commit a penalty at the ruck with virtually no time left. The Belgrano penalty was wide left and in the field of play where the ball became unplayable ending the match 20-20. I owe beers.

My thanks to Preston Gordon and Steph Bruce as this one really called for ARs.

SF/Golden Gate SL 23- BELGRANO ATHLETIC CLUB 29 Referee: Preston Gordon
Sheeran Field, Treasure Island, 1915
AR: Stephanie Bruce

This was a harder hitting, more skilled, and higher intensity contest than most Super League matches I've seen. Both sides were looking to win this one after the opening match drew level. Belgrano's scrum was formidable, their backs ran and moved the ball at pace, and their offloading in contact was very good. SFGG's loose forwards and ability to counterattack shone. The kicking game was also well executed by both sides, in open play and in attempts at goal.

At halftime it was 20-10 to SFGG (2 converted tries and 2 penalty goals to 1 of each) but Belgrano earned their comeback, with a couple more tries and points from the boot. Thankfully the match was not spoiled by the single yellow card to each team for ungentlemanly conduct (one in each half).

Stephanie did a great job on the touchline, and I'd like to thank her for coming out to run on a chilly Tuesday night.

At the after-match I was presented with a Belgrano AC tie, which suited the #1's I was wearing just fine. It was a great evening of rugby!


UC Santa Cruz women – Chico State CANCELED


Live Oak 7 – PENINSULA GREEN 39 Referee: Bruce Carter
Under the lights in Morgan Hill, led by the running and one-man rucking of Andrew (Maka) Tameilau, Pen Green established a 34-0 lead in the first half.

A renewed commitment on the part of the home team and some player substitutions proved enough for Live Oak to win the second half, 7-5.

BELLARMINE 55 – Silicon Valley 0 Referee: Chris Fisher

CARDINAL NEWMAN/ROSA 22 – Montgomery 14 Referee: Cary Bertolone
In a league game, under the lights, the Rosa High School team started out strong, rucking well and spinning it out for a 17-0 halftime lead. Montgomery started putting it together and they made a game of it with two converted tries in the second half, but Newman Rosa won 22-14.


EPA Razorbacks 12 –SAN MATEO WARRIORS 39 Referee: Preston Gordon
TJ: Ed Mortlock
Terman Park, Palo Alto, 1100
The first half wasn't much of a contest, with San Mateo scoring 25 points to 0. The second half was much better (2 tries each way with the difference being the extra conversion for San Mateo). A fair amount of fans had turned up by this time to see the game, and the men's game that followed.

GOLDEN GATE Gold 75 – Piedmont 0 Ref: Bertolone
At Treasure Island, Golden Gate kicked off at 11:30 w/ the sun shining and went to work, systematically working their way down field and scoring 4 tries for a 24 point lead at the half.

The PITS team played hard and never quit, but they were outsized and not able to contain Golden Gate's continued assault on the try line and the final score was 75 - 0.

Berkeley 17 – DIABLO 35 Referee: Mike King
This contest see-sawed into a very tight match until the waning minutes when Diablo’s #12 raced into a few quick scores. When he was given daylight at any time, he was devastating. Both sides were well-coached and played physical, intense rugby by these young men fairly new to the game. The assembled fans were obviously entertained by the contest. Diablo struck first, and started to widen its lead to a 15-7 halftime mark and an early second half try. At that point Berkeley seemed to settle down and march back in to the contest- down by only 3 points and gaining ground. It truly was only in the last 10 minutes that the final deluge occurred. It seemed like fun was had by all.

Monday (3/7) on the dry turf of Bishop O'Dowd.

SFGG U19 Silver 30 – Bishop O'Dowd Silver 0 Referee: John Coppinger
Good match, played in good spirits. SF/GG were better organized and able to exploit their breaks, while the Dragons could not.

Bishop O’Dowd 0 –GOLDEN GATE JV 21 Referee: Sam Davis


We have several incoming exchange referees in March.

If you would be able to host, please contact Bjorn Stumer:

Remember: hosting earns you not only good karma, but valuable Hosting Points, good toward a future out-going exchange.


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris