There’s an old saying that not only applies to sports, but life in general, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Sometimes some re-adjustments are needed, but in the overall picture everything pretty much stays the same. For Old Puget Sound Beach (OPSB), the last two tournaments had gone that well, so they were out to get back in the right direction. They did, by beating Rovers 47-19 and taking home the Subway Championships Summer Sevens Cup.
As always, they started off very quickly by getting the ball into the hands of one of their fastest players in Miles Craigwell and letting him juke a defender and cut back to the outside and score easily. Rover quickly countered with a score by breaking two tackles off a quick up the middle to tie the score at 7.
Then OPSB does what it has done so many times in the past, get it to the quick and shifty brothers Fili Botitu and Isimeli Daveta. Both had great games scoring a combined 5 times and seemed to have a bit of fun while doing it. Daveta was the first to score by using his version of the stutter step to once again freeze a defender for a half second and race up the sideline for a score.
Botitu was next by kicking a grubber to the back corner and picking it on a perfect bounce and racing past two Rover defenders for his first score to make the score 21-7 and head into halftime with a commanding lead. However, OPSB had been here before and didn’t want to take anything to chance, so they decided to up the temp a bit more.
In the second half, it was more of the same for Beach. Despite an early score off a kickoff from the Rovers, OPSB unleashed the Fijian duo once again. This time however, it was Botitu that scored not once, but twice in a row. It started off a ruck and a quick cutback on the weak side to race up the sideline untouched for his second score. Less than 20 seconds later, he was back to the races with a his famous stutter step off a scrum and perfect placement of the ball in the scoring area for an easy conversion.
Daveta finished off the scoring for OPSB when he found the smallest lane on a quick stutter step and cutback through two defenders and outpacing the entire Rovers team for his second score and putting the game out of reach.
After the game, there was nothing smiles, hugs and hand pounds for Beach and yet another mission accomplished after a little fall off the tracks.
“We wanted to preach defense and set a goal of no tries,” OPSB head coach Evan Haigh said. “We lost sight of that and putting tempo back in our game in the last two tournaments and didn’t want to go down that road again.”
“We were disappointed about our last few tournaments and just wanted to try to put that behind us,” OPSB player Miles Craigwell said. “We wanted to step up our defense and score first and score often and I think we did a better job of that today than we did in the last couple weeks and its good to get back winning.”