Schuylkill River Rugby Newsletter, April 8-15, 2017
In Troop’s (D3) most recent game they travelled to Reading and were handed a 52-12 defeat against a very tough opponent. Hunter Valentine scored both tries in this game and Dan Callahan made a conversion kick. For his efforts Hunter was awarded “Yardsbrew Brawler of the Match” and got to take home a 6 pack. Izak Du Plooy also played a strong game and was awarded Man of the Match by the Coaching Staff.
After the match Coach Clark informed me “We got to see the level of rugby that we need to play in order to compete at the top of the division. Reading was a solid club that performed their game plan flawlessly. We were able to disrupt them and hold them in the first half, but playing 60 minutes of defense is always tiring. It was a pleasure to watch the team as the score line does not show the level of effort and teamwork that went on during the game. This is by far the greatest I have ever seen the team play. I know I have said that in several of these write ups, but the team continues to take steps forward. We had lots of great individual efforts as well as a solid foundation for next season.”
After several weeks off due to circumstances beyond our control the Exiles (D1) finally played a match earlier today. Unfortunately the result was a 40-7 defeat at the hands of Rocky Gorge. I caught up with scrumhalf Pat Boyle on the sideline after the game and he explained very simply that Rocky Gorge capitalizes on every mistake that you make. They have 15 guys on the field looking to be opportunists at all times.
Coach Owen Jones kept things in perspective and informed me that “Rocky Gorge has established themselves as the team to beat in recent years and today we took a big step towards challenging their position. It has been an emotionally challenging few weeks for the players and it was pleasing to see them channel those emotions and come together. The scoreboard accurately reflected the flow of the day and we now have the benchmark for the work that lays ahead.”
I also had the opportunity to catch up with Captain Joe Midwig who told me “it was a tough battle back and forth with a few balls not falling our way. I think everyone was focused and played their hearts out. I’m excited to see how we come out against Pitt next week.” As I mentioned previously, that match against Pitt is a big one and I’d like to see a really good turnout from our supporters.
For his efforts, Rich Casey was the Exiles Man of the Match today and the Coaching Staff also wanted to highlight the performances of Gareth Jones, Ben Janssen, Joe Midwig, David Jones, and Jeff Hall who all played hard and will each be in contention for Brawler of the Match.
The last thing before I sign off is that I would like to thank Greg Mininger and Paul Abrams for taking time to come out and work with the Otters on Tuesday and Thursday of this past week respectively. The kids were on spring break and numbers were light so this made it a good week to do some individual skill development. Greg took the kids through a kicking clinic on Tuesday while Paul did a scrum clinic on Thursday. Both of these guys have a vast knowledge of the game and it was generous of them to take the time to help pass some of that knowledge along. Thank you both.