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Written by Alex Goff    Tuesday, 03 April 2012 19:57    PDF Print Write e-mail
Sooners Have Hopes in 7s
Sevens - Collegiate Sevens


The University of Oklahoma rugby team may be going through some tough times in D1-A, but new 7s coach Jon Velie is hoping to give them every reason to rebound as he looks ahead to the USA 7s Collegiate Rugby Championship June 2-3 at PPL Park just outside Philadelphia.

OU can erase the memory of a 100-point shellacking by Life University with a good showing in 7s. Dennis Hawk DC photo.

Click here for information on tickets and attending the USA 7s CRC in June.


Velie, a three-time All American scrumhalf at Cal in the late 1980s coached Oklahoma in 15s before his work as an immigration attorney (Velie’s firm is a RUGBYMag.com sponsor) pulled him away. But he’s back coaching 7s and enthusiastic about it.

“I know there is some work to do, but when I come into this I know we have to be relevant, we have to compete,” he said. “This is a challenge, and an opportunity, and I knew we have some very good players and very good athletes to work with. Hopefully they can see 7s as part of how they can rebound from a difficult first part of the season and mentally recharge.”

Velie said he comes from the old school of 7s – one that preaches avoiding contact more than anything – and recognizes that the game has become somewhat more contact-intensive.

“But I think you can make the mistake of watching the IRB World Series and thinking everyone plays that way,” he said.”There is a middle ground between how the game has evolved and the basic fundamentals of the game. I am looking at developing a meld of the two approaches.”

Velie said he’s got some impressive speed among the 7s team candidates. Patrik Jones is a 15s prop, but a tall one who is mobile. Brad Henry has speed and so does Michael Al-Jiboori.

“We are looking at all types of athletes,” said Velie, who has worked on doing some crossover recruiting. “For the rugby-experienced guys, it’s tough to learn a new way of playing. But I think when you lose a few games the toughest part is mentally getting over that and realizing you can compete; you can win. I have no doubt we can do that.”

 
Written by RUGBYMag Staff    Tuesday, 03 April 2012 18:01    PDF Print Write e-mail
Tradesmen Colts On Tour
School Age - Boys


The Detroit Tradesmen Colts team is off to Ireland for a tour run by Irish Rugby Tours, Ltd.

The team will spend the better part of a week in Tipperary, Galway and Dublin, starting with a tour of the home of Irish rugby, Lansdowne Road.

Their opening match will be Thursday against a boys rugby club from Dublin, and the next day they relax with some training in Hurling and Gaelic football.

Saturday sees a game in Nenagh and then on Sunday they tour Bunratty Castle.

Monday they finish the tour with a game against a team from Galway.

The Tradesmen tour is handled by RUGBYMag.com Sponsor Irish Rugby Tours, which offers customized tours of Ireland for teams of all levels.

Click here to fill out this information form to get details.





 
Written by Press Release    Tuesday, 03 April 2012 17:34    PDF Print Write e-mail
Canada U17s Open Tour With Loss to Gloucester
Canada - Men


Rugby Canada's Men's Under 17 Team showed plenty of fight and heart despite enduring a tough time in the first match of their UK tour, going down 48-10 to a strong Gloucester Academy side.

Canada’s U17 spent the morning of game day working through their final adjustments to their game plan before moving on to Gloucester's famed Kingsholm stadium for their first encounter of this year’s campaign. It was special for the players for this game to be played at the home of the Cherry and Whites, with the Canadian flag blowing and the National Anthem playing. There were almost 800 people in the crowd and the volume at times was deafening, the scoreboards had both the Rugby Canada and Gloucester logos, and the game was carried live on the jumbotron – everything combining to create a rugby atmosphere few of the players had ever experienced before.

The game started at a ferocious pace, and after conceding a couple of early scores, the young Rugby Canada athletes grew into the game, showing resolve in defence against their experienced opposition and conceding just once more before half-time, in addition to adding three points of their own through the boot of Shawnigan Lake's Giuseppe DuToit to make it 19-3 after 40 minutes.

The second half followed a similar pattern, with Gloucester again starting strongly and muscling over for another brace of tries before Canadian determination kicked in and held the Cherry and Whites at bay for long periods of the game. The West Country side continued to exert pressure, making it tell with a further two tries as the game progressed. However, the U17s continued to show fight, claiming the last word with a well-taken try by Aurora Barbarians' Paul Ciulini. Michael Douros added the extras.

Despite the result and scoreline, the match will have proved an important introduction to the level and pace of play that the Canadians are likely to come up against in the remaining games on tour. “Tonight’s game was exactly the sort of test we were looking for," Coach Jim Delaney said. "The players now know the level they need to achieve moving forward to our next game against Wales."

The Gloucester test will also have provided coaching and playing staff alike the opportunity to identify areas for improvement ahead of their next match. "We put ourselves under great pressure from the start by turning the ball over at the first two scrums," Delaney said. "However it was a great experience for the two young 15-year old players who started up front. They absorbed a lot of pressure and in the end our scrum became a lot more stable. The area of the game we struggled with the most was the contact area. We didn’t do a good enough job of protecting the ball in the contact zone allowing Gloucester to contest every breakdown. This will be an area of focus in our practice tomorrow."

The match was not without its positives for the Canadians, with Delaney noting the ambition his side showed with ball in hand. "Although the score line does not show it we showed some good intent when we had the ball. We broke the Gloucester line on many occasions, but we just couldn’t get enough players in support of the ball carrier.  During our attempts to play we made many mistakes as we developed our understanding of each other. Although it was a heavy loss there were many positive aspects to our game and many players reacted well to the pressure."

"The Gloucester side picked tonight was a good side, full of players with speed and more importantly quick feet. A poor start by us allowed them to settle while our start was anxious. The environment in a world-class facility was overwhelming and it was daunting for the players who for some have never seen a ground like that." Nevertheless, the coach said that the feeling in camp overall was happiness with the performance, if not the result.

All 26 squad members got to run out on the Kingsholm turf, with Delaney identifying those who rose to the challenge ahead of selection for their next match on tour. That game takes place on Thursday April 4 at Rodney Parade, home of RaboDirect Pro12 side Newport Gwent Dragons, where the U17s will play Wales Schools U16 in their second and final warm-up match ahead of games against England South, Belgium and France at the RFU's Wellington Festival

Rugby Canada U17 UK tour schedule
Monday April 2 vs. Gloucester RFC Academy
Wednesday April 4 vs. Wales Schools U16
Wellington College Festival
Sunday April 8 vs. Belgium U17
Wednesday April 11 vs. England South U16
Friday April 13 vs. France U16

PLAYER NAME/ CLUB/ CITY/PROVINCE
Nicholas Andrews – Lords Tweedsmuir SS (Surrey, BC)
Randall Barton – Shawnigan Lake (Duncan, BC)
Lucas Bradley – Alberni D SS (Port Alberni, BC)
Paul Ciulini – St Joan of Arc, Aurora Barbarians (Maple, ON)
Thomas Chan – Lakefield College (Peterborough, ON)
Andrew Coe – Bill Crothers, Markham Irish (Markham ON)
Peter John Collins – St. Michael’s College, Oakville Crusaders (Mississauga, ON)
Michael Douros – Senator O’Connor, Balmy Beach (Toronto, ON)
Giuseppe DuToit – Shawnigan Lake (Mapleridge, BC)
Marshall Fuller – Collingwood, Capilano (West Vancouver, BC)
Harjun Gill – St Georges School, Meralomas (Vancouver, BC)
Tristan Hooey – Glebe, Bytown (Ottawa, ON)
George Jeavons-Fellows – The Kings School, Worcester Warriors (Bricklehampton, UK)
Winston Jin – St Georges School, Meralomas (Vancouver, BC)
Kieran Lacey – Holy Heart of Mary, Swilers (St Johns, NL)
Jordan Marsh – Stoufville D.S.S, Markham Irish (Stouffville, ON)
Calixto Martinez – Earl Marriott, Bayside (Langley, BC)
Connor McRae – Collingwood, Capilano (West Vancouver, BC)
Christopher Miles – Shawnigan Lake, Velox (North Saanich, BC)
Spencer Miller – Yale, Abbotsford (Abbotsford, BC)
Oliver Nott – Shawnigan Lake, Cowichan (Cowichan, BC)
Rupert Peers – Elgin Park, Bayside (Surrey, BC)
Lucas Rumball – Senator O’Connor, Balmy Beach (Toronto, ON)
Mitchell Santilli – St.John’s College, Brantford Harlequins (Brantford, ON)
John Shaw – St. Peter CHS, Bytown Blues (Orleans, ON)
Brandon Waeyen – Henry Wisewood HS, Hornets (Calgary, AB)

NON TRAVELLING RESERVES:
Louis Retief – Sardis SS, Abbotsford (Chilliwack, BC)
Kieran Washburn – Beaumont composite, Edmonton NoeWesters (Beaumont, AB)
Thomas MacDougall – Chateauguay Valley, Ormstown (Ormstown, QC)
Devin King –Uxbridge SS, Oshawa Vikings (Stouffville, ON)
Tobin Sydney-Smith – Sentinel, Capilano (West Vancouver, BC)
Spencer Loughlin – Yale, Abbotsford (Abbotsford, BC)


 
Written by RUGBYMag Staff    Monday, 09 April 2012 03:00    PDF Print Write e-mail
Men's DI-AA College Top 25, April 3, 2012
Rankings - Men DI College


The playoffs are inching closer, now less than a month away, and teams are either winding down their conference seasons or playing some out-of-league friendlies to get ready for the postseason.

 
Written by RUGBYMag Staff    Tuesday, 03 April 2012 14:56    PDF Print Write e-mail
Women DI College Top 25 - April 3, 2012
RUGBYmag Premier - Rankings - RUGBYMag Premier


The Mid-Atlantic and South held their respective women’s DI college championships this weekend, and the results forced some movement in the national rankings.

Texas celebrates South championship.

The University of Texas has been the most exciting team to follow. After winning the Texas seed to the South play-ins, the Longhorns went on a 4-0 undefeated streak to win the South Championship over defending champion North Carolina – and by no small margin: 36-3.

So it made sense to swap UNC’s and Texas’ rankings, and also drop Central Florida a couple of pegs after its 22-7 semifinal loss to the Tar Heels.

In MARFU, Virginia proved less competitive than years past. The 2011 Final Four team finished third in MARFU, defeating West Chester 10-0 in the quarters, losing 32-5 to Navy in the semis, and then defeating Maryland 29-5 for the final seed.

Other major moves include California, which finished second in the Pacific Mountain North Conference after Stanford. Why were the Golden Bears slotted in front of Midwest champ Northern Iowa? UNI’s ranking was established after they won the Midwest in November 2011. Since then UNI hasn't responded to any requests for information on their pre-season fixtures or results. Cal, on the other hand, has been active all year, and frankly, it’s easier to gauge progress when results are circulated.

You’ll also notice that Michigan has slipped in front of Ohio State. Very early in the season, the two teams played a friendly in which Michigan won 17-7. Since then, UM has stayed active, traveled to the East Coast for spring break, played in the Virginia Women’s Invitational Tournament, and logged some nice time on the pitch against teams like DI women’s club Detroit (17-all tie).

OSU, however, has been plagued with game cancellations as Mother Nature has prohibited its two true games against Tennessee and Indiana during the last month. It’s upcoming schedule isn’t looking too promising either, and it’s very likely that the top 15 will not be on the same pitch in a real match before nationals.

“We’re playing women’s club Scioto Valley this weekend, but some of our players are heading out of town for Easter,” OSU coach Philip Payne said. “The following week is the Midwest U23 tournament. It’s a shame since we have a really talented, but very young team that could do really well if we could play. We’re going to the Sweet 16 raw and untested.”

And finally, UC Santa Barbara joins the rankings after finishing second in the Pacific Mountain South Conference. The team fell to PMSC champ UCLA twice during league season and will attempt to snag that sixth and final seed to nationals this weekend during play-ins. UC Santa Barbara will have to get past Chico State, who we’ve ranked just below the Top 25 newcomer. Should they exit the semifinals unscathed, UCSB will face the winner of Colorado State v UC Davis for the berth to the Round of 16.

After the play-ins conclude, there will be little movement in the rankings before the first round of nationals, which are set to occur April 20-22 in four locations countrywide.

Women DI College Top 25 – April 3, 2012
1 (1) Penn State (3-0) (10-2). Won MARFU Championship with a 136-5 win over Maryland in semis and 32-5 win over Navy in final.

2 (2) Brown (7-0), (10-3). Defeated Boston College 70-7; went 2-1 on tour defeating Glasgow 50-5 and Watsonians 45-0, and losing to Edinburgh women 33-27

3 (3) Women's Cougar Rugby (BYU) (4-0) (8-2). Lost to WPL's Glendale 39-22 and Canadian university Lethbridge 5-3.

4 (4) Army (6-1) (7-2). Defeated women's DII club Brandywine 47-0 and lost WPL's Beantown 29-0 at Four Leaf 15s

5 (6) Stanford (4-0), (9-0). Won Pacific Mountain North Conference.

6 (7) Navy (2-1) (7-2-1). Defeated Virginia 32-5 in MARFU semifinal, lost to Penn State 32-5 in final.

7 (8) Eastern Illinois (5-0), (10-0). Idle

8 (5) Virginia (3-1) (7-3-1). Lost to Navy 32-5 in MARFU semifinal, defeated Maryland 29-5 for 3rd.

9 (15) Cal (4-1). Finished second in Pacific Mountain North Conference.

10 (11) Northern Iowa (7-1). Won the Midwest championship.

11 (14) Texas (7-1). Won South Championship with a 52-33 semifinal win over Georgia Tech and 36-3 final over North Carolina.

12 (12) Colorado (3-1) (11-6). Lost to Colorado State 19-10 in scrimmage.

13 (10) UCLA (5-1). Won Pacific Mountain South Conference but lost final league game 22-19 v UC San Diego

14 (9) North Carolina (7-1) (7-3). Defeated Central Florida 22-7 in South semifinal, lost to Texas 36-3 in final

15 (16) Michigan (6-2), (11-5). Tied Detroit Women 17-17.

16 (13) Ohio State (7-2), (7-3). Had lost to Michigan 17-7 but both real games vs Tennessee and Indiana canceled due to weather. raw and untested!

17 (17) Princeton (6-2) (10-3). Went 1-1 on spring break tour to England.

18 (20) UC Davis (2-2). Finished 3rd in Pacific Mountain North Conference.

19 (19) Colorado State (2-2), (3-2). Finished 3rd in Pacific Mountain East. 3 abbreviated scrimmages in 2012, the last of which was a 19-10 win over Colorado University

20 (23) West Chester (1-1), (6-3-1). Lost 10-0 to Virginia during MARFU quarterfinal

21 (unr) UC Santa Barbara (4-2). Finished second in Pacific Mountain South Conference; defeated UC San Diego twice.

22 (25) Chico State (1-3). Finished 4th in Pacific Mountain North Conference.

23 (21) UC San Diego (2-4). Finished third in Pacific Mountain South; lost to UC Santa Barbara 21-19, defeated UCLA 22-19.

24 (22) Central Florida (6-1). Lost South semifinal to North Carolina 22-7

25 (24) NC State (3-3). Finished second in South's Cardinal conference with two close losses to North Carolina but forfeited seed to South play-ins.

 


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