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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Millersville 7’s Tourney Wraps Up In Good Form

By Brendan Triplett
@brendanUSArugby

Saturday is a rugby day and there is no better way to jump into a weekend or kickoff a good 7’s season then to have a spring tourney to introduce some of our D1-AA boys to each other on the pitch and then mix it up with some hard hits from our local schools and other heavyweights.

The bottom line of the weekend was that Temple University took it to the house and walked away with a 19-0 win against University of Delaware in the final. How did they get there? Well solid games from Temple (A and B sides), Millersville (A side), and University of Delaware (A and B sides) helped them storm through the pool play and the quarters to face off against each other in some epic battles. Let’s set the scene.

Take the jump to read more.
The first Kick Off of the day started at 1030am with Temple A facing off against Millersville A in a match that looked to set a poor standard for Temple’s game play. Millersville took the game 24-0, then moved on to make some strong statements against University of Delaware A (13-12) and York College (17-7). In all ways that you could look at it, Millersville A seemed to be running away with the tournament and everything that they did was a testament to the time they spent training and in the gym over the off-season. In the semi’s the hosts were able to top York College a second time (26-12) before a difficult loss in the quarters to University of Delaware. Honorable mention here to Connor Whitman (wing) for what is arguably the try of the tournament with a grubber taken in for a try and Paul Sommerville who scored several tries for the Marauders and kept them strong until the end.

The University of Delaware had a strong showing all day with their teams with wins against York College and Temple A and others. Let’s face it, this team was a powerhouse years ago in the CRC, and they are continuing that tradition by coming into this tournament with all guns blazing. They rushed from a big win over Millersville A 20-0, in the Semifinals, before stepping onto the next field to play Temple just moments later. Going from one game to another is something that strength and conditioning can help but the game can be cruel at times and four seven-minute halves back to back would have been impossible by any lesser of a team. By making up half of the teams in the semi-finals we all need to keep in mind how strong this team really is and the very real threat they pose with their 7’s game.

Temple University had a slower start to their day with several losses scattered throughout the morning to the University of Delaware with their A side. However, they started to taste blood in the quarterfinals and by the time they hit University of Delaware B in the semi’s they knew what needed to be done to avenge their losses and take home the win against both A and B sides of Delaware. In the semi’s they took Delaware 48-0. In the final they took Delaware 19-0. Not a bad finish for a team that didn’t hit their stride until the quarterfinals. The Temple B side seemed to be the team to beat as they rushed through their pool play nilling University of Delaware B (22-0), Millersville B (33-0), and Millersville C (39-0). They have the depth and breadth to maintain strong players throughout the games and continue to impress as the season ramps up.

What is the Temple Univ. victory attributed to? Play makers and heart. Anthony Sciarra (flyhalf) and Peter Mulville (wing) didn’t disappoint, as expected, with outstanding performances all day. “They were leaders and playmakers all day. Our fifth year seniors led the charge,” Coach John “spider” Sciotto related of his men. However good they were leading, Mike Wellstein (captain) was good for giving them the guts to keep fighting. It was a solid showing and nothing less than what we expected from a team of this caliber.

Coach Sciotto felt the day went well and it was a good event to grow the sport. He summed his team’s performance up by saying, “On the whole, I was thrilled by the effort of all of the guys on both sides since we have been inside of a gym for practice for the past couple of weeks. Adjustments were made throughout the day and the guys responded well to those adjustments without practicing it first. It was a nice first day out on the pitch but we still have a lot of work left to do.”

It is great to see these heavyweights face off but what can arguably make tournaments like this even more enjoyable are seeing the player development and teamwork of schools such as Susquehanna, Albright, and York who fought their way against incredibly tough opposition and into the semifinals. There is no doubt that they can feel good about the work that they have been doing in the off-season and with continued effort we can expect these teams to make even more of an impact throughout their seasons.

Club Sports Administration for Millersville is seeing the growth of this tournament and is already in contact with Millersville rugby to expand the program next year so be ready for an even better event next year. The proceeds from the games help to get Millersville University out to the Las Vegas Invitational in just a few weeks to compete for a spot in the Collegiate Rugby Championship being played in June in Philadelphia PA. Stay posted for updates on our teams and as always, Ruck on!

2 comments:

  1. Was at this game and couldn't have said it better myself! Loving it! Ruck on!

    ReplyDelete