Wednesday, May 11, 2011




The 2011 NCRRS Banquet and Awards Ceremony will be held at Scott’s Seafood in Walnut Creek on Saturday, June 25th. Drinks at six, dinner at seven, and they start turning the chairs over at eleven.

Those who are eligible for free kit (5 or more club/college games by assignment in the past season) are also eligible for free dinner. Drinks are on your own and guests are fifty dollars.

RSVP to Bjorn Stumer:


There will be several teams playing a number of 20-minute halves. It’s nice up there this time of year. Let us know if you can help out. At present they don’t have any referees.


It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Mark your calendars and make your plans!

June 3-4 Santa Rosa Fijian Sevens (Friday-Saturday)
June 25 Palo Alto Sevens
July 2 Marist Sevens (somewhere in the Bay Area)
July 9 Palo Alto Sevens
July 16 Dunsmuir Sevens
July 23 Palo Alto Sevens
July 30 Nevada Sevens in Reno
August 6-7 USA Rugby Club Championships at Sheeran Field (Sat-Sun)
October 7-8 Fiji Day Sevens (Fri-Sat)


OLYMPIC CLUB 26 – Los Angeles 12 Referee: George O’Neil
ARs: John Coppinger, Bruce Carter
#4: Bjorn Stumer

Old Mission Beach AC 15 – SACRAMENTO LIONS 30

PROVO 30 – Santa Monica 23

BELMONT SHORE 60 – Northside Tigers 7

These four winners advance to the round of sixteen in Chula Vista May 21-22.


SFGG 50 – Tempe 21 Referee: Mark Woods (Pacific Northwest)
ARs: Bret Reordan (Portland), Sasha Goodwin (Portland)
#4: Bjorn Stumer
Scoreboard Operator: Preston Gordon

FRESNO 32 – Eastside Tsunami 0 Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
ARs: Bret Reordan (Portland), Sasha Goodwin (Portland)

SANTA ROSA 34 – Red Mountain 12
ARs: Lois Bukowski, Mike King

PORTLAND 20 – Oregon Rugby Sports Union 12
ARs: Lois Bukowski, Mike King

May 8
Pacific Coast Men's D2 3rd-Place Final
San Francisco Golden Gate 12 – SANTA ROSA 20
Referee: Aruna Ranaweera
ARs: Bret Reordan (Portland), Tasi Toala (Utah)
#4/5 Officials: Bjorn Stumer, Eric Rauscher

On a very windy but sunny 55F day at Sheeran Field on Treasure Island, NorCal #2 seed Santa Rosa battled NorCal #3 seed SFGG for the 3rd and final Pacific Coast playoff spot in the National Round of 16. Wind affected the play of both teams, but Santa Rosa played intelligently with the wind at their backs to lead 10-5 at half.

In the second half, Santa Rosa established structure through their forwards to nullify SFGG's wind advantage and scored twice to lead 20-5. SFGG made several athletic breaks, but missed numerous scoring opportunities due to handling errors and isolated ball-carriers. SFGG edged within 20-12 with 10 minutes remaining, but in the end, Santa Rosa played more controlled team rugby to win the match, 3 tries to 2. Much thanks to Bret and Tasi for their help as AR's and Bjorn and Eric as #4/5 officials. Also, thanks to Dave Williamson and Helen Markus for hosting BBQ dinner for the large group of Pacific Coast match officials on Saturday night.

Fresno, Santa Rosa and Portland all advance to the round of sixteen in Chula Vista May 21-22.

Report by Phil Akroyd

Saturday: Bud Bay 15 – 46 SOUTH VALLEY 46
I’d been checking the weather forecast all week for the Tucson area. Highs of 97 degrees and clear skies, so I was a little concerned about the heat and running two games on a potentially rock-hard field. When I arrived at the venue, I was pleasantly surprised as the field was firm, yet had moisture with a good breeze blowing each day. It was well lined and full-sized. I learned that a number of local rugby teams club together and pay the city to maintain it and it seem to be effective.

Bud Bay drove the 1,600 miles down from Olympia, WA, while South Valley drove from Morgan Hill for the second game of the day in the D3 Pac Coast playoff (the first being Camelback of Phoenix against Tucson Magpies – the Magpies won comfortably). Although South Valley is a Nor Cal team, I had not seen them in action. They were quite impressive.

South Valley dominated scrums, rucks, tackled hard and had a 10 that looked as though he had played at a much higher level in years gone by. They had a good blend of youth and experience and a significant weight advantage over Bud Bay. In contrast, Bud Bay had a problem with getting the ball in straight at lineouts, looked indecisive at the half-back positions and made many unforced errors. They gave away two interception tries, kicked badly and mis-handled.

South Valley were the kings of the set piece. They scored most of their points from scrums and fast tap-down lineout ball. They scored four tries by half time to one PK goal from Bud Bay (3 – 29 half-time score). It continued in the second half, although Bud Bay did pull back two tries, courtesy of poor penalty discipline in the final ten minutes from the NorCal boys. The result set up Sunday’s championship game at noon.

Sunday Championship Game: TUCSON MAGPIES 19 – South Valley 17

Not knowing too much about either team, it was difficult to infer any direction in which the Championship game would go. Given the performance on Saturday, South Valley looked good, but most people who watched the Magpies on Saturday were talking up the home side.

The Magpies went up after three minutes from a PK, then ten minutes later, scored a wonderful breakaway try down the right wing to score about halfway between the posts and corner flag. Not an easy kick, given the swirling wind, but it was made and the visitors were not happy. They didn’t seem as slick as the previous day and it wasn’t from lack of effort. Things just weren’t going their way. Things got worse six minutes later when South Valley conceded another penalty in the red zone that was also kicked successfully. South Valley were showing signs of self-destruction with a lack of discipline at the tackle ruck – off feet- and a lack of discipline in relation to cheap stuff off the ball.

South Valley responded with a try before half time which began a period where the momentum began to swing back to Valley. The Magpies lost their Captain and number 8 seconds before the break in a freakish injury. He was carrying the ball at speed and a Valley player did a tap-tackle around the 8’s knee. He dropped as though he had been shot in what could well have been a knee ligament type of injury.

Valley came out and scored another try fifteen minutes after half-time and the Magpies another PK, but at 16 -10 with just under fifteen minutes to play it was still up for grabs and obligingly the tinder box ignited as both teams realized that they needed to go out and win it.

The Magpies got over a period of being a man down (cynical play in the red zone) and South Valley were coming toward the end of a period of being a man down (high tackle during a promising attacking move). During more attacking play by Tucson, a Valley player was in the ruck and slapped the ball out of the Tucson 9’s hand, resulting in another period in the bin. As the card was being administered, I heard a significant amount of verbal abuse coming from the Valley touchline on the far side of the field. It continued and escalated and built to one of the players being restrained by his teammates while he pulled a flag out of the ground and marched toward the field of play. It was actually quite comical to watch, but then I realized that the waling banshee was the guy who had 30 seconds left on his yellow card… So he never came back on the field.

So with Valley down to 13 and Tucson in an attacking position, it looked like a good opportunity for them to extend their 16 – 10 lead. Not so, as Valley recovered possession and moved almost the entire length of the field to score in the left corner. Wow. Did not see that coming and neither did Tucson. Valley were one point down with the conversion yet to come from the kicker who had only made about two conversion in the entire weekend. So guess what, he made it from the sideline to put them up 16-17 with six left to play.

Solid play continued and Tucson continued to attack in the opposition half for several minutes. Tucson drove the ball forward and a Valley sub failed to roll after making a good tackle, creating another perfect PK opportunity in a kickable, but not easy position. The kick was good and Tucson regained the lead 19-17.

After the restart, a few phases came to nothing from the NorCal boys and the Arizonans put the ball out at the first opportunity to take an extremely hard fought win. The closeness of this game was something to behold and was played on just about the right side of feisty. Valley were obviously disappointed in the loss, but realized themselves that they self-destructed a little with indiscipline but Tucson battled far above their weight. Well played to both teams who now go on to Sweet 16s in Chula Vista in 2 weeks, with Tucson taking the higher seeding. And guess what I’m doing in 2 weeks? Reffing D3 Sweet 16s in Chula Vista. If it’s half as good as that game, it’ll be a good weekend.


AMAZONS 50 – Lowland 0 Referee: Stephanie Bruce
Sacramento Amazons defeated Lowland Girls 50-0. The field was atrocious, albeit because the grass had not been mowed, prompting jokes that balls might be lost in the field of play. This did however soften the impact of tackles it was like landing on a soft pillow.

The Amazons had way too much size for the Lowland girls to absorb. Both teams showed a lot of heart, but Lowland couldn't retain possession or absorb repeated tough runs by the Amazons. Good luck to the Sac girls at nationals.


CALIFORNIA 43 – Life 10 Referee: Tim Luscombe
ARs: Tom Zanarini, John Pohlman
Cal will play Utah in the semis, next Saturday in Glendale, Colo.

ARKANSAS STATE 30 – St. Mary’s 17
Arkansas State will play BYU in the semis.


JESUIT 79 – Dixon 17


What: Play Rugby USA- California San Francisco, VIP Benefit & Silent Auction
When: Thursday, June 9th, 6 – 8 PM
Where: Pacific Union Club, 1000 California Street, San Francisco, CA 94108
Why: To support the development of Play Rugby USA programming for at-risk youth in the Bay Area

Play Rugby USA is introducing its unique youth development programs to the Bay Area this year. Please join us as together we look to create future opportunities for Bay Area youth through delivering our mission of "developing youth through rugby".

Big Crowd
Hail, hail, the gang’s (mostly) all here, at the SFGG clubhouse May 7:
Left to right:
Standing: Bruce Bernstein, John Coppinger, Bernie Brown (Pacific Northwest), Brett Reordan (PNW), Peter Simpson (USA), Tasi Toala (Utah), Dixon Smith, Preston Gordon, Ed Parkin (Arizona), Bjorn Stumer, John Pohlman, Matt Eason
Sitting: Mark Woods (PNW), Tim Luscombe (USA), Aruna Ranaweera, Sasha Goodwin (PNW), Eric Rauscher
Kneeling: Bruce Carter
Outside or at the bar: Ray and Kat were there, George O’Neil, maybe a few more we’ve forgotten...


For the Senate
Pelicus Scriptoris