Written by RUGBYMag Staff    Sunday, 30 March 2014 21:52    PDF Print Write e-mail
Jr. Blues Beat Rivals
School Age - Boys

The Kansas City Jr. Blues played crosstown rivals St. Thomas Aquinas Saturday in a curtain-raiser game for the KC Blues v. Palmer Midwest DI club match. 

The Blues won the men's game in impressive fashion, and the Junior Blues won well, also, beating St. Thomas 24-0.

In the first half, both teams made some inroads, but the game remained scoreless until the Jr. Blues got on the board with a try from prop David Mershon on a pick-and-go with about five minutes left in the first half. The conversion was missed and it was 5-0 Jr. Blues at halftime.

The Jr. Blues started the second half down a man because of a yellow card at the end of the first half. But they came out quickly nonetheless, scoring early in the second half when the Jr. Blues captain and No. 8, Will Ben Sims, crashed over when he tapped quickly on a penalty near the Aquinas line.  Sims converted the try making it 12-0. The Jr. Blues extended their lead to 19-0 when Jr. Blues scrumhalf, Matt Edelman dotted down. Then Sims added another try when he took a ball off the back of a scrum and raced 40 meters to score in the corner.

Written by RUGBYMag Staff    Sunday, 30 March 2014 19:48    PDF Print Write e-mail
Jesuit Clinches NorCal Single-School #1
School Age - Boys

Jesuit of Sacramento clinched the Northern California single-school league this weekend with a 28-8 defeat of De La Salle.

Jesuit finished the league season undefeated.

The clash between the two unbeaten teams was very tight through the first half, with De La Salle taking an early lead on a penalty kick. An intense Jesuit defense kept De La Salle at bay, though, and caused repeated turnovers at the breakdown.

The rain curtailed some of the Jesuit attack, flyhalf Matt Coyle coolly managed the Jesuit attack with pinpoint accuracy on his kicks to open space, which pinned De La Salle in their half.

Defensive pressure was turned into points on several occasions, as Jesuit scored four tries.

De La Salle kept plugging away and scored a try late.

Jesuit also plays in the Boys multi-school varsity, and won their conference in that league with an undefeated season. They will take the top seed in both competitions going into the playoffs.

Written by Alex Goff    Sunday, 30 March 2014 19:31    PDF Print Write e-mail
Charlotte Tigers Win Tight HS Clash in NC
School Age - Boys

In a tight clash between top HS teams from North Carolina, the Charlotte Tigers squeaked by Union County 31-29 this past Friday night.

Charlotte in orange, Union County in blue.The Tigers got on the board first when player of the game Duncan Van Schalwyk grubbered ahead for Korbin Miller to chase down for the try.

Charlotte kept up the pressure with a Union County player in the sin bin the Tigers scored twice more.

Union came back in second half with  intensity and were helped by a yellow card to a Tiger player.

Charlotte re-took the lead to stay late and held it with a long defensive stand.

Along with Van Schalkwyk, Korbin Miller, Will Portas, Derrick Pierce, Diego Simbron, and Derrick Wiggins played well for Charlotte.

"We need to work on fitness and ball handling in wet weather, specially when it matters the most in last ten minutes," said Charlotte Head Coach Riaan Van Schalkwyk. "I am so proud of the boys for playing some great rugby this year."

The rivalry between the Tigers and Union County has been an intense one, and in the last three years they have played for the state title, with Charlotte winning in 2011 and 2012, and Union County winning in 2013.

Written by Brett Anker    Wednesday, 26 March 2014 22:38    PDF Print Write e-mail
Marquee Matches in North Carolina
School Age - Boys

North Carolina Youth Rugby sees several intriguing matchups this weekend. In High School action, the Charlotte Catholic Red takes on Concord High School.  Meanwhile, in club rugby, the Union County Lions take on the Charlotte Tigers under the lights at Parks William Complex.

Coming into this weekend's contest, Charlotte Catholic has dominated its opponents. Currently, they sit with a 4-0 record and have yet to yield a point this season. Seeded 8th in Rugbymag's High School Single Season rankings, Charlotte looks to keep its foot on the accelerator as they take on the 5-1 Concord High School.

Concord's only loss this season came to 4-1 North Mecklenburg. North Meck fell to Charlotte Catholic Red 35-0 earlier this season.  Concord will need a strong performance this weekend in order to give the Reds a tough go.

In club rugby, two talented teams face off for sole possession of first place.  Union County and the Charlotte Tigers, ranked 13th and 14threspectively, both sit at 3-0 and atop the current standings.

Both Union County and Charlotte have put up over 35 points in each of their victories.  Expect both defenses to face their toughest test of the season.

Written by RUGBYMag Staff    Tuesday, 25 March 2014 23:24    PDF Print Write e-mail
Gonzaga HS Wraps Successful Tour
School Age - Boys

The Gonzaga College High School Rugby team recently completed a very successful tour of Italy, finishing 2-1.

Gonzaga and their hosts pose.Arriving on Saturday, March 15, and going to the Olympic Stadium to see Italy and England play their Six Nations match got the tour rolling from the beginning.

It was an early morning on Sunday, March 16 as they kicked off the competitive portion of the Tour de Italia with a match in Rome against U18 Elite League #1 ranked and defending Italian Champion Capitolina.

Both sides came out determined in a very physical contest and it was the Eagles who drew first blood when junior wing Reggie Corbin took a long pass from senior center Matt Nalls after a feed by senior flyhalf Ben Cima, and got the edge for a spectacular 70-meter jaunt. Cima made the conversion and the Americans were up 7-0 before many had settled into their seats.

The hard hitting continued and Cima was able to convert a penalty kick for a 10-0 margin which held up through the first half.

The Italian team returned for the second half motivated to claw back into the game, but it was Gonzaga once again that drew first blood. Cima slotted another penalty kick for a 13-0 lead. The Italians began trying some different line attacks and short kicks which resulted in their first score of the afternoon which cut the Gonzaga lead to 13-5. Struggling to get some momentum on attack Gonzaga saw Capitolina score a second try which, with the conversion, brought the hosts within a point.

Gonzaga's defense was strong throughout the match but they simply did not get enough ball in the second half and they were ultimately worn down by the opponent and penalties, giving up another try with no conversion to go down 17-13, and then a late converted try to lose 24-13.

Both teams got together for pictures and some fellowship after the match. The Gonzaga players earned much respect for their play and their ability to handle themselves under difficult conditions.

On Wednesday, March 19, Gonzaga found themselves down 17-0 in the first half to U-18 Elite Division #4 L'Aquila. Junior No. 8 D'Andre Easterling converted by Cima closed the gap to 17-7 at halftime. Hoping to change things in the second half, it first appeared that it wasn't in the cards as L'Aquila scored early to increase its lead to 22-7. Junior Gonzaga prop Jack Carroll then scored the first of his two tries, making it 22-14. L'Aquila rebounded to score once more and make it 29-14.

But Carroll scored again, steamrolling over tacklers to do so, and the score stood at 29-21 with three minutes left.

Then senior hooker Tommy Rippert stole the ball on the L'Aquila scrum, and Easterling then broke out of the scrum with a weakside run and then linked with Cima who found center Nick Skalka. Skalka popped to outside center Matt Nalls, who broke the line and then offloaded to Wing Cam Bohlander who broke two tackles and scored to make the score 29-26. On the ensuing kickoff, Cima received the ball and made a short line break to set up a quick ruck from which senior scrumhalf Jimmy Ronan passed the ball quickly to Carroll, who continued to move the ball quickly to sophomore prop Dante Lopresti. He also passed quickly from fullback Stephen Beckerle to wing Reggie Corbin. Corbin finished the movement with a 40-meter run to seal a thrilling 33-29 victory.

The Tour concluded in the City of Prato March 21. Gonzaga faced Elite U18s Gispi Rugby Prato, a member of the Icavalieri Rugby Club. The pressure was clearly on the Purple side to start strongly, and they responded in a big way with a 42-14 clinic.

Gispi Elite scored first to take a 7-0 lead but Gonzaga came back with Skalka scoring a try converted by Cima, and then another when flanker Charlie Depont ran 70 meters to give his side the lead. Wing Corbin scored a long-range try also to make it 21-7, and then scored again. Wing Michael Barry then got into the act, scoring twice. Cima converted all but one, and that one was converted by Ronan.

Gonzaga's Varsity White team finished the tour 2-2 and Varsity Black U16s went 3-0 with a victory over the #1 Capitolina.


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