Saturday, April 19, 2014

Central Washington Wins Thriller Over Utah, Cal Advances

Central Washington will face Cal next weekend in the Varsity Cup semi-finals after both picked up wins on the campus of UCLA today. The Wildcats barely got by Utah 25-24 while Cal put in a dominant 41-0 win over UCLA.

Central Washington 25-24 Utah

In one of the most thrilling matches of the year Central Washington came from behind to beat Utah 25-24 in their Varsity Cup quarterfinal match. Down two with no time remaining Josh Bower hit a forty yard penalty to give the Wildcats the win. The entire match was a back and forth affair with both teams matched teams.

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BYU, Navy Into Varsity Cup Semis With Blowout Wins

The trend of blowouts in the Varsity Cup continued in Annapolis, Maryland on Saturday as BYU and Navy racked up blowout wins over Dartmouth and Texas. Both teams advance to next week's semi-finals where the Cougars will host the Midshipmen in Provo.

BYU 70-12 Dartmouth

Although defending champions BYU went into their match against Dartmouth heavy favorites they didn't look like it early as Dartmouth did very well to hold the Cougars scoreless for the first ten minutes. Still, BYU were putting relentless pressure on Dartmouth and eventually broke through with a Josh Whippy try in the corner to make it 5-0 13 minutes in. During the first 30 minutes BYU also had a try held up in the try zone and missed a penalty.

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Junior All-Americans Hold Off Uruguay, Take 3rd At JWRT

The Junior All-Americans have closed out their Junior World Rugby Trophy campaign on a high note after defeating Uruguay 26-25. The win gives the team third overall in the competition. Japan defeated Tonga in the first place match and will earn promotion to the Junior World Championship.

Head coach Billy Millard elected to make only two changes to his starting line-up and that consistency showed early as Scott Dean scored just four minutes into the match to give the JAA's a 5-0 lead. Ben Cima would add to that tally with penalties in the 6th, 18th, and 20th minutes to make it 14-0.

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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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