Friday, April 18, 2014

Long Beach Claims Gold Coast Conference Title



By Daniel Whipple

Long Beach State won league this past weekend. The four teams to make playoffs from the Gold Coast Conference were: Long Beach, University of San Diego, Santa Barbara City College and Cal State Fullerton. All playoff games were held in San Diego, since the University of San Diego had the top seed going in to playoffs.

The first round of playoffs consisted of San Diego versus Santa Barbara, and Long Beach against Fullerton. Santa Barbara had the serious disadvantage of only traveling with 16 men. San Diego was also obviously excited to be hosting the playoffs and showed what they were capable of. They beat Santa Barbara a deafening 95-15. Long Beach had a defensive showcase as they held Fullerton to only one unconverted try in the second half. Long Beach defeated Fullerton 22-5.

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Varsity Cup Super Regional Preview & Predictions


After having the first round off, the heavyweights of the Varsity Cup enter the tournament this weekend with Super Regionals in Annapolis and Los Angeles. Last year's champions BYU will get their title defense going against Dartmouth while runners-up Cal will play UCLA. The semi-finalists from last year, Central Washington and Navy, will play Utah and Texas respectively.

Cal vs. UCLA

This match has loads of history on its side and should make for an entertaining match. Cal are the favorites in the match but haven't nearly been as dominant this spring as in years past with losses to St. Mary's and UBC in their most recent matches. The Golden Bears have had blowouts as usual but they have also been held close by teams, including Utah. Leading the team at the tournament is capped Eagles center Seamus Kelly. Look for him and Jake Anderson to assert themselves early and often.

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PRP Preview: Glendale, SFGG Close To Clinching

PRP Release

OMBAC vs. Glendale

The Raptors only need one more point from three matches to clinch a place in the final. That's very likely to happen but if there was a trip-up game for the team it could be this weekend against OMBAC. The Raptors have won six straight matches and eventually that is going to have to give. Of those six matches all have been at Infinity Park. The three times they've been on the road this season they've gone 2-1 and had close results each time. Still, led by scorers like Chad London, Dustin Croy, and Preston Bryant, the Raptors have shown remarkable consistency this season. With numerous games under their belt the Raptors still should pick up the points they need.

OMBAC are technically alive for a spot in the final but need to win their final four matches and hope for help elsewhere. They suffered a big setback with a huge loss to SFGG last weekend. It might not have changed the result but if OMBAC had league leading scorer Zach Pangelinan in the match it might not have been such a lopsided result. Pangelinan is back this weekend and with their backs against the wall expect OMBAC to come out firing.

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Eagles Abroad: Weekend Preview


Eagles Abroad is brought to you by Grubber, makers of fine sporting apparel. 

Things are winding down across Europe for several Americans overseas. Of course the likes of Chris Wyles, Samu Manoa, and Blaine Scully are each helping their teams achieve the playoffs in England. The same goes for several players in the RaboDirect Pro12. Aside from that there isn't a lot of action this weekend, especially in countries that are taking a break for Easter. One area that will see Americans is in the RFU Championship where Toby L'Estrange gets yet another start. Also of note, Marcel Brache started again for the Force and the playoffs are beginning for Mate Moeakiola and Nevers in the Federale 1.

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Women Eagles Make Changes Ahead Of Final Can-Am Match


The Women Eagles will find out exactly how much work they have to do before the World Cup as they take on Canada tomorrow in the final of the two match Can-Am Series. The U.S. will look to rebound from the embarrassing 51-7 loss last Tuesday. The series will be decided on aggregate points so it's techincally possible that the Eagles could still win but in reality they are looking to head into the match and improve on the things they did poorly earlier in the week.

Head coach Pete Steinberg has elected to change things up with a number of players coming into the line-up. In the forwards only prop Jaime Burke and lock Stacy Bridges maintain their starting spots. Sarah Chobot and Katy Augustyn come in in place of Naima Reddick and Tess Kohanski in the front row. At lock Molly Kinsella is replaced by Sharon Blaney. Shaina Turley started on Tuesday at number eight. She'll move to flanker on Saturday with Lynelle Kugler and Kat Daley, both of whom are getting their first starts.

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Junior All-Americans Name Team For 3rd Place Match

The Junior All-Americans have a chance to finish their Junior World Rugby Trophy on a high note as they take on Uruguay in the 3rd/4th place match early tomorrow morning. Head coach Billy Millard has elected to make only three changes to the team that lost to Tonga earlier in the week. Max Robertson comes in at lock in place of Tyler Enfield, Peter Malcolm replaces Hanco Germishuys at number eight, and Seth Halliman will slide in at wing in place of James Vaifale.

The Junior All-Americans were disappointed to miss out on a chance for promotion to the Junior World Championship but considering the lack of preparation time heading into the tournament and availability being an issue for several of the college players the team has to be proud of their tournament. Players like Titi Lamositele, Germishuys, Gabe Farley, Nemia Qoro, and Ben Cima have stood out.

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Weekend Television Listings



College rugby is coming to your living room in a big way this weekend with all four of the Varsity Cup matches being available to stream. In addition to those matches there is the standard European and Super Rugby matches.

If you know of an event or a tournament that is not on our list, please share it with us at thisisamericanrugby@gmail.com.

Friday:
  • Leinster vs. Benetton Treviso, 11:55 a.m. et/8:55 a.m. pt (live on Fox Soccer Plus)
  • Harlequins vs. Leicester, 5:00 p.m. et/2:00 p.m. pt (delay on Fox Soccer Plus)
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