The Wilmington rugby club unseated defending DII club champions Rocky Gorge 24-12 Sunday to make the national DII semifinals.
Led by a punishing performance by No. 8 Kevin Wiggins, and with Kevin Barry perfect on his kicks, Wilmington came out on top in a bruising, physical quarterfinal at the Princess Anne Athletic Complex in Virginia Beach, Va.
"Kevin has worked very hard to be a consistent kicker," said Wilmington Head Coach Struan Murray. "The fact that he could get us seven points each time was huge."
Kevin Wiggins and Chris Wiggins scored tries in the forwards and Ben Riley added one in the backs. Barry converted all three, and added a first-half penalty.
"This was a brutal game," said Murray. "The level of physicality was very high. It wasn't champagne rugby but we got through it."
The key, said Murray, was his team's ability to keep possession, and tight head prop Matt Lerner, an unsung hero all season, was central to that effort.
"His clear out," said Murray, "Was unbelievable."