Friday, January 27, 2017

Four Clubs, Two Big Matches

It's in between time for some of the top clubs in the country. With the Cal Cup finishing last week and the Major Rugby Championship starting soon, teams from each competition are looking for high-level matches. With that in mind the Glendale Raptors will travel to the Bay Area to take on Life West, while OMBAC will make the trip to Austin to play the Huns.

Glendale Raptors vs. Life West 

Life West are coming off a second place showing in the Cal Cup. They surprised a few people on their way to being the top regular season team, and they were able to leapfrog neighbors SFGG to put themselves in the title match. The Gladiators pack serious talent with many of the players that played for San Francisco in PRO Rugby on the roster. Devereaux Ferris is one of those players, and he was just named the Co-MVP of the Cal Cup. The likes of Pila Iongi and Martini Talapusi have also given strength to the team.

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The Raptors have also added some strength to their team. Will Magie, who played with the Denver Stampede, has joined the club after a stint training with the Western Force. He was just named to the Eagles ARC team and is a big addition for the club. Seth Halliman is also set to play a bigger role with the team this year. They did lose the likes of Hanco Germishuys and Martin Knoetze, but Glendale are one of the deepest teams in America.

OMBAC vs. Austin Huns

OMBAC were crowned Cal Cup champions last week, and they looked good doing it. Led by Cal Cup Co-MVP Zach Pangelinan, OMBAC have one of the best offenses in America and will be taking that to Austin. Tim Stanfill, Kalei Konrad, and others have all played big minutes for the team this year, but they are going to be tested against the Huns. The travel of the Cal Cup season combined with the flight to Austin could tire them, but they could also be full of confidence just having won the Cal Cup.

The Huns have undergone a major renovation. With a bigger budget they have brought in Todd Clever, Hanco Germishuys, Michael Reid, and Martin Knoetze. Clever and Germishuys are with the national team this weekend. That's in addition to several big time players that many may not have heard of. The Huns are viewing themselves as a professional outfit this year, and they have intentions of winning. That is going to be tested against OMBAC, but tests are exactly what the Huns need. 

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