Monday, April 30, 2007

51st Post!!! (ok so maybe I should've put that in the last post...)

I added a few links to the is our bit of press for the hour, would've posted it sooner but I was hoping to do more bits: Sentinel
Oh and activity has picked up at Scrumhalf Connection. Didn't notice till she mentioned my blog. Coolbeans =]

Yep so fifty posts, kinda ridiculous considering how long I've been blogging =p

This Saturday is the National frickin Championship. My parents are coming up (they only come up for one game and one game only a year). Of course I'm nervous. Every Mother's Day I go and get myself injured and have to get a CAT scan. Bleh. Oh well, I'm excited about the game, I guess. I'll post a photoblog later. But I'm superstitious.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


Ykno...ever since goff merged with rugby magazine into erugby news...well they've pretty much refused to give DII collegiate women's rugby any press. To add insult to injury they've covered DII mens and DIII mens club far more thoroughly in years past. I dunno, I'm pretty pissed off that I payed forty frickin bucks for my entire division to be ignored. Ok so we got a paragraph this year. I don't care if UCSC gets nill press (despite being last years champs and having made the final game again this year), but do you think they could've mentioned anything about Elite 8s, or predictions, or SOMETHING to acknowledge the countless DII collegiate womens teams across the nation have set their soul for glory and put in the hard hours for the sport that they love? This has been stewing around in my heart for a while now but I've been waiting...and as the days tick by I realize it isn't going to happen. That one little paragraph tacked onto the numerous coverage of the various tournaments. That was all that I was expecting.

For forty bucks I could buy a lot of things. 80 tacos, a REAL jersey, two pairs of rugby shorts (one black one white in case I ever work up the courage to try out for a select side), a match many things that would foster my rugby career (er besides the tacos)...why am I wasting it on a news source that tells me that my division doesn't matter?

IF someone from erugby reads this I hope they don't get the wrong idea. I'd LOVE to keep my subscription, it's great to have rugby media in the US, I just wish they'd give us the same amount of coverage as they did before the merge!

I report on DII Women's Collegiate Rugby News and I'm damn proud of it!

In the first round of games we defeated the College of Charleston in a pretty solid match 49-0. This wasn't their first time representing the South and they had very threatening backs. Their fly-half could cut back all day long and played fabulously with ball in hand. Charleston were swift poachers and always threatened our ball at rucks. One of our rookies got a yellow for high tackles, we've tried to teach her to get em lower but its definitely one of those cases that will just take time. We felt bad though because their fly-half had to change jerseys twice because we shredded both in attempt to tackle her crisp lines. One of our players managed to have godawful luck and break her metacarpal in her first 30 seconds of play. The ref for the match, Katy from DC was terrific and its not just because she had zero tolerance for feeding in the scrums. All refs at the tournament were impeccable in their vigilance, striving for a good free flowing game.

(usa rugby's records are down probably because of the hubbub over the Belmont vs Austin game so I can't give exact scores for other teams matches but I'll post those results later)

U of Arizona Wildcats lost to Bowdoin Maine by about three trys. What I did see of the game, Bowdoin managed to get it out to their 14 who put on the jets and beat everyone around the corner.

In the other bracket Norwich defeated Western Oregon in the only game that wasn't a shutout in the first round. And I can't say that I saw that much of the game thanks to my teammates insistance on taking a long lunch.

Lastly Iowa St beat Mary Washington (whom I managed not to see ALL tournament...don't quite know how that was accomplished) handily 63-0.

Round Two saw us defeat Bowdoin 49-0 in a much tighter match then the score would reflect. Their backs were very technically sound and would have been much harder to deal with if our forwards hadn't stepped up their pressure and effectively smothered their backs with tackles at every opportunity. Their forwards were also quick to poach and damn solid in the scrums (I might have been winning the scrums but we certainly couldn't wheel them). Gotta say I was pretty happy with my lineouts all tournament thought, I think that was the most ball I've EVER won in the lineout, all my games combined. I'd also like to mention that Bowdoin is pretty much the cleanest, most polite, and classy team I've ever had the pleasure of playing (or watching for that matter). I mean, not a cruel word, explicative, or anything for that matter. One of the funnest games I've played in a while that's for sure. I did get in a bit of trouble for being offsides twice in a row of a lineout (I'm lucky the ref didn't ping me for talking back) but frankly I was a bit mentally frazzled after smashing into their big replacement tighthead for the second time in a row. It should also be noted that Bowdoin is one of the only varsity teams in the nation and definitely deserve it.

Iowa defeated Norwich University in a tight match 20-19, apparently Iowa State was ahead in the first half and Norwich came back and almost got the win but the time ran out. (granted this is just what the field crew told me)

In the consolation matches U of Arizona defeated the C of Charleston by two points and Western Oregon beat Mary Wash by a bit.

Overall, Nationals was an interesting experience, and one very different from last year. It was the same fields and we stayed at the same motel but went with thirty people(which sounds impressive till you subtract two coaches, four ex-players, and two injured). Needless to say there were a lot more rooms and we had to take a VERY indirect flight to keep prices down (San Jose to LAX to Kansas City to Orlando, Orlando to New Mexico to San Francisco; can you say jet lag?). The fields were great and the weather was much improved from last years. Less humid, less hot, same old sulfur water. The one thing that they could improve the situation is to have the porta potties be closer to the field and changed daily! On the second day it was RANK!

Right, in other news the D1 final four is a big ol' surprise. Stanford (duh), Penn State (duh), UC Davis (!?!??! Y'all rock!), and New Mexico (!??!?! Goff has ranked them high for quite a while but I've never seen them in the fours before). I'm kinda bummed that Navy didn't make the finals but yea...grats Davis! They're always happy to play a scrimmage against us and we're glad to see em make it so far! They play against Stanford on the 4th of May and you can bet your ass I'll be up their cheering for em.

Lastly, I can only state how grateful I am to Belmont Shore for exposing me to a higher level of rugby and helping me realize the steps necessary to take my game to the next level.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Oh Sanford...

Florida was a lot more pleasant this year. We had a wee bit of a support network and it worked miracles to provide our players with a tad more comfort then we were expecting. Weather was nice and we won both our games 49-0. We'll be going to the National Championships @ Stanford again on May 5-6. We'll be playing Iowa State. Yep. More deets later but I'm BEAT.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

So it's been a busy weekend/week

My mother visited me over the weekend and that was nice. We raised 422.50 panhandling the night before she came up. We've been fundraising all week, and scrambling in practice while trying to avoid the glares of our professors. So I already know that I suck at journalism but my broadcast journalism class is proving it. I did the tech part writing blows. This is going to be a tough class! Er in rugby news I want to bite the throat out of 'four corners', bury its cannibalized corpse, set the ground on fire, then drive a three foot stake in it. We did some rugby related drills today and it was frickin fun! I realized that my understanding of defense is completely instinctual and I need to learn some of the theory behind it.

Oh. And I'm just it a back thing? Why do people get so frickin antsy when you tap someone a wee bit too hard (in their judgment) in a touch drill? I've been bitched out well over my fair share of times for slapping rather then daintily caressing their fair and tender bodies (please note these are the same people who continue to pass out of the "tackle/endofthefrickindrill" if you don't smother the ball). It's just frickin obnoxious from a forwards perspective. I mean a back in a 2-1 or 3-2 drill might have the agility and speed to react to cuts and unexpected bursts with grace and a deft touch at the hips...but frankly my ass is just trying to get to you in time. *grumble* Look, I'm not saying backs aren't tough, open field tackles are brutal on the tackler and tacklee, but c'mon... I took three or four elbows to the throat today and you didn't hear me complaining. Ykno why? Cause it's going to happen in game, they weren't intentional, it just on!

On another note we leave for Florida tomorrow. I sure as hell hope they're ready. Back to sulfur water, swarthy hot days, and infamous nights!

(oh lastly I got a new hd that arrived today and I'm formating as we speak....weeee! I'm such a geek! 400 gb Seagate SATA for...99 bucks! Free shipping. Yehhhhh.
Wish us luck!

Friday, April 13, 2007


ooops yeah I've been so busy trying to help my team raise 16,000 dollars (to send a bunch of silly goofy ruggers over to the sulfur pits of Florida) that I missed this great little article...thanks Blondie for the reminder here So I'm off to panhandle. And I just found out that my prop has chickens in her dorm room. Weird huh?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Pelican Refs

Yes we're frantically trying to raise funds...I literally had 5k dollars fly through my hands the other day. School is ridiculous.

WESTERN OREGON 26 (4) – Sacramento State 19 (3) Referee: Sam Reagle
Touch Judge: Deb Hart
This was an exciting game between two proud teams. Both sides struggled to control the ball in the first half as the pitch was soggy in spots from an overnight misting of rain. The Wolves of WOU missed several opportunities due to poor ball handling, but appeared in control, though only leading 7-0 at the half. The second half started well for WOU with 2 tries in the first 7 minutes on poaches of Hornets' passes for easy tries, but the Hornets answered back with 3 hard-fought tries of their own over the next 20 minutes to end regulation tied 19-all. The Wolves reasserted themselves in the overtime scoring one minute in and shutting the Hornets down for the win. Jen Williams (#13) of WOU had a banner game scoring 2 tries and setting up the game winner with a long run down the left side before dishing off to her winger.


UC SANTA CRUZ 36 – Western Oregon 7 Referee: Sam Reagle
It's hard to say if the previous day took its toll on WOU (UCSC had a bye) or if UCSC is just that much better, but the Slugs were noticeably more aggressive, dominating most scrums and driving the Wolves backwards for most of the day. Halftime score: 31-0. Both advance to the next round of play-offs in Florida: the Banana Slugs as the #1 seed and the Wolves as #7.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Playoff Weekend

So it's been a crazy!....crazy!...crazy! weekend. I honestly don't know where to begin.

Saturday morning we set everything up expecting a bit of a blowout. Sac State has definitely been one of the most consistently good teams in our league and looked the strongest (taking 2nd) this year but this was Western Oregon! We had swept Sac State in league play 31-5 back in February. We had a bye that day due to Utah backing out, and Central Washington lacking the advanced info, and our league couldn't muster a third competitor.

Anyhoo, the match started at 11 with some of our famous rolling fog and slightly greasy pitch and Sac pulled out all the stops, playing the gutsiest match I've seen all year. Arlene and Georgi held it down at prop (being tough grizzled vets), their jumper stealing it all, #20 pirating at every breakdown, Lorae Simpson intense as all hell at scrum-half, their fly and inside cutting through everything, and their fullback rounding out with some calm collected hands. Western Oregon was their typical selves, fast, aggressive...always the first ones to the breakdown, ready to poach and ever willing to grind it down any channel given a sign of weakness.

Jeez they gave a good show against Western Oregon. WOU was ahead at first and then Sac finally broke their try line and the crowd was silent...just starting to hope. WOU scored two quick ones at the very beginning of the second half, one after the other, the first being a lightening quick intercept try. Then Sac came back! They scored the second try to tie it near the ending moments of the game and everyone was screaming. They needed the conversion to tie it up...supposedly the kicker was shaking so hard she tripped as she went to kick the ball. She split the sticks and the crowd howled!

Overtime consisted of five minute halves. WOU subbed in their resting A-side fullback and she made 60 meters with her first touch of the ball. They scored shortly thereafter and made the conversion. Sac state didn't really threaten them until the 2nd half of overtime and their inside center ALMOST made a clean break through the inside, given an inch of more space and she would've been through the gap. But the trap snapped shut without enough support the ball was smothered and they never really had another viable chance. The final score of 26-19 doesn't reflect how tight of a match this really was.

Sac State played their heart out and had an amazing match into overtime against Western Oregon (which has been a tough ass team since its fairly recent inception). Sac State sure as all hell made NorCal proud, it's great to see them do so well. We'll try and bring the national title back again this year so they can take the second seed next year!

Sorry I had to add this sick picture of yours truly...'cause c'mon there has to be some benefit to running a consistent blog yeh?

We played our game on Sunday. We've had a shortage of props this year so our tighthead was a lock who hadn't propped in a while which threw off our scrums quite a bit. I COULDN'T THROW A LINEOUT WELL TO SAVE MY LIFE. Our backs had issues passing forward in the last quarter but overall we managed to play a solid game and keep them to a single score. Alas I didn't score a try but managed to set up two trys for my teammates. I can't rightly tell more then that due to a few knocks I got with their lock's noggin'. We had two scores in the first half, scored two quick ones after the half...and then they dotted the line, and we came back with a few more. Final Score was 36-7. Pretty damn good for a team of rookies.

So we'll be taking the 1st seed going into the Elite 8 tournament in Sanford, Florida. Of course we're scrambling for funds to send more then 18 players to Florida (unlike last year!). Our first game is set against the College of Charleston (South #1). To compile the brackets...

Division II Women’s College Club Match Schedule, Sanford, FL
Saturday, April 21
9:00 am: UC Santa Cruz (PCRFU #1) v College of Charleston (South #1)
9:30 am: University of Arizona (SoCal #1) v Bowdoin (North-East #2)
1:00 pm: Mary Washington (Mid-Atlantic #1) v Iowa State University (Mid-West #1)
1:30 pm: Western Oregon (PCRFU #2) v Norwich (North-East #1)

Sunday, April 22
9:00 am: Pool B Consolation Bracket
9:30 am: Pool A Consolation Bracket
1:00 pm: Pool B Championship Bracket
1:30 pm: Pool A Championship Bracket

I got to talk to WOU's coach, Chris Ruffolo after game which was pretty neat. She was an All American flanker, and U-23 Eagle who went on tour to the British Isles. It was cool to hear that my blog is being read by real people and I hope it encourages more people to pick up the hobby. The more press women's rugby gets, the more involved, aware, and appreciated our players and coaches get...and well shit that can't hurt can it? My only advice is to use blogger ('cause it's easy), to get started now ('cause what's more exciting then championships), and to stick with it ('cause it's really cool to realize that I've been blogging for a full season!).

Now as thanks for sticking with this REALLY long are some links...

Pictures from Sunday
In Local News

Goff mentioned us in the final paragraphs of "Who is Rested Could be Key in PCRFU Playoffs" but I don't wanna quote it 'cause you should pay the subscription to read it! (jk) but it includes a sweet picture of our flanker and her crazy hair.

Oh and real quick in D1...Stanford beat Chico in the Finals taking back the #1 seed 43-30. So Chico takes PCRFU #2. UC Davis did well and beat Cal 26-5, and for the first time in my memory the Bears aren't in Sweet 16s. Chico snagged the worst pool for playoffs though...playing Army first and then the winner of Penn State vs Ohio State. Basically every single team in the pool has been a top four finisher in recent years (ok so army wasn't top for last year but they're ranked #2 right now). I still wouldn't count Chico out of the top four. Good Luck to all Cali teams (not the Cal mens need any help in D1) but the same well wishes go out to Humboldt State in DII mens. Last year three of the four national collegiate champion teams were from California =]

Just for comparisons sake here are the scores from the PCRFU playoffs this year and last:
2007 PCRFU Collegiate Women's DII:
Host: Santa Cruz
April 7-8, 2007
DAY ONE: WOU over Sacramento 26-19
DAY TWO: Santa Cruz over WOU 36-7
Women's Collegiate Second Division
Host: Western Oregon
April 8-9, 2006
Match A - Western Oregon (22) vs St. Mary's (0)
Match B - UC Santa Cruz (45) vs St. Mary's (5)
Match C - Western Oregon (24) vs UC Santa Cruz (34)
PCRFU 1 = UC Santa Cruz = USAR 3 = 2006 Finish: 1st

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Long Day

6:30 Practice=death. Ugh, I don't agree with this. I'm tired. I should sleep. Well I'm taking 17 credits...and I have to go to bed. I'll finish this in the morning...

Ok so today wasn't so bad...more new classes....books are going to be like 350!!! @(U#@#(&*@(#*&@(#*.

So in rugby news todays practice was to stretch out some of that soreness and scrum down against the boys team. It was fun stealing some hooks from my friend since frosh year Hooker John. Our field was painted and posted and was looking fine.

One of the reasons why I've been so reluctant to post about the upcoming playoffs is because the info is practically changing by the hour. Basically I didn't want to keep repeating incorrect information. But I guess this is the info so far...


Dates: 4/7-8/07


Venue: UC Santa Cruz (Santa Cruz, CA)

Saturday Matches:

Match A: UC Santa Cruz (NCRFU 1) v BYE

Match B: Western Oregon (PNRFU 1) v Sacramento State (NCRFU 2)

Sunday Matches:

Match C: UC Santa Cruz (NCRFU 1) v Match B Winner

Match D: BYE v Match B Loser

Winner C = PCRFU 1 = USARFU 1

Loser C = PCRFU 2 = USARFU 7

So basically we have two seeds going to Florida.

April 21-22, 2007
Seminole County Sports Training Center, Sanford, Fla.
Hosted By: The Central Florida Sports Commission

Division II Women’s College Club Match Schedule, Sanford, FL

Saturday, April 21

9:00 am: Pacific Coast #1 v South #1

9:30 am: So Cal #1 v Northeast #2

1:00 pm: MARFU #1 v Midwest #1

1:30 pm: Pacific Coast #2 v Northeast #1

Sunday, April 22

9:00 am: Pool B Consolation Bracket

9:30 am: Pool A Consolation Bracket

1:00 pm: Pool B Championship Bracket

1:30 pm: Pool A Championship Bracket

Yup so if we win on Sunday we're going against the Southern seed and if not Northeast. I'll do some leg work and find out who won what regionals etc. But that'll be later...right now I have to juggle rent, utilities, and books.

Oh! I'm excited because I'm taking a broadcast journalism class and I'm going to have to research, write, and edit radio broadcasts and podcasts. One guess what I'm going to do my pieces on...