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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Capital Selects Men’s & Women’s XVs Route Stars


By Brendan Triplett

The highly anticipated double exhibition matches between the Capital Selects (CRU) and Stars Rugby men’s and women’s XVs got underway this weekend in what turned out to be two epic battles with similar results.

Hosted at the Evergreen Sports Complex in Leesburg Va, in front of a crowd of a few hundred, the women started the action in a first half nail biter that began with an early try from Stars’ Justine Wypych who took a long run from 65m out, into open field, to start the game.  CRU wouldn’t let the points go unanswered and scored, in quick turn, with 24 unanswered points.  In the last few minutes of the first half the Stars gained a foothold and fought back, hitting CRU with two tries and another successful conversion.  Halftime score was 24-19 CRU leading.

Take the jump to read more.

The second half made things difficult for the Stars, and CRU organized their set piece, bringing it together later in the game and shining with early tries and a critical stolen lineout that put them just out of reach.  Despite a valiant effort from a late try, CRU wouldn’t let up on the pressure and scored several more solid tries, picking apart the Stars’ defense.  They capped their performance with a last minute try to end the game 55-24 CRU.

The men’s XVs took the field, after supporting the women, and the game opened in similar fashion with a strong start from the Stars, taking the lead 10-7 and holding on to it through a half, wrought with penalties.  The half looked as though it would end, tied at 13, until a review-needed try by CRU, which was finally blessed by the assistant referee, pushed CRU into the lead.  CRU felt the momentum and scored once more before the end of the half leading Capital 27-13.

More penalties plagued the teams in the second half with CRU scoring again against a wavering Stars defense.  Stars men were fast on their feet and used their 7s skills to move the ball but CRU’s experience as a tested XVs team shone through as they dominated the Stars in both momentum and their set piece.  A late try by the Stars gave some hope but it was too little too late as CRU scored twice more to finish the game with a commanding 68-20 lead.

Overall, the teams were excited to have this level of play and despite the outcomes were happy to get together to grow the game.  Director of Stars Rugby, Liz Entwhistle, put together a solid team to play the best that CRU could offer and their speed on the field kept CRU on their toes.

Ultimately, CRUs President, Matt Robinette, cited “experience” as the edge CRU found over the Stars, “the main difference was that you could see that the Capitals had played together before… and knew what players would be there for support.”  Overall, he applauded the speed and intensity of the Stars and looked at the event as “a great celebration of rugby,” with a charge for everyone to find ways to keep the momentum of the sport going.  They go back to their home teams with an all-star match under their belts and some solid high-caliber experience to bring to their teammates.

Players to watch:  With the intensity of the game and the skill level high keep an eye on these players as CRU President Picks -
Jennifer Larrimore - Raleigh
Maggie Olney - D.C. Furies
Mattias Cima - Rocky Gorge
Ben Cima - Rocky Gorge


2 comments:

  1. Finally someone to cover some East Coast teams! Thanks Triplett. Looking forward to your next article. Keep 'em coming man!

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    Replies
    1. Happy to oblige. Keep an eye out, more east coast action to come!

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