Stingrays Match Reports: Jan 19, 2019
U16 & U18: Coach Forrest & Coach Peter
What a fantastic day of rugby all around today! On behalf of the coaches, we are extremely impressed at the level of play and composure by our athletes today.
U16 kicked off the day with a game against Santa Ynez. We were outnumbered by a significant margin, and filled out our side with Eric (u14) and a couple players from SLO. We kicked the ball off and turned it back over after just a few phases, with Aron running the ball in for a try moments later. This was the tempo of the entire game that I stopped keeping score at 27/O. It was not a score clobbering, but it was in possession. We held the ball for the majority of the game and spent most of the time in their 22. Well done u16’s.
Special mentions go out to Sean, Sandro and Eric who all had exceptional games.
Our first u18 game was SB vs the team that traveled all the way from Sacramento Solo.
Solo showed up with probably close to 30 u18’s. Large bearded men that I as a 30 year old rugby player would consider formidable if I had to face them on the pitch myself! We (stingrays) had 12 actual u18’s and borrowed Aaron, Thomas and Sam from the u16’s to fill out our side. It’s fair to say that we the coaches felt like we may be physically dominated heading into that game.
Well, we couldn’t have been more wrong. We received the ball from kick off, went through 3 structured phases and scored. Then we did it again, and again and again and so on.
All the boys deserve praise for how hard and well they played, shutting out SOLO with a 51/O victory. It’s was beyond remarkable. However, a special mention goes out to Tommy Schaffer and Harrison who collectively threw up more than an orphanage with stomach flue. I personally counted 7 (that’s right- 7) curled over throw ups from the two of them. But I will say this, at no pound did either one of the puke partners want to quit playing and after a short vomit intermission, they were both back on the field grinning ear to ear and scoring tries!.
Immediately after playing SOLO, Sb was asked to face another large formidable team from Fresno; Edison.
Edison came out of the gate strong, but quickly learned when you run hard at the stingrays, you end up pretty sorry! The big boys such as Jesus, Zac, Lucas, Tatum, Gavin, Jay and Rhett put a clobbering on the big Fresno runners who though they could power through us. Soon they were on the back foot which allowed us to begin putting points on the board. Once again, every member of the team deserves recognition, but I was so extremely impressed by Sam, a u16 who stepped up to play with the 18’s at 8man, a very tough position and not only played amazingly well defensively against an older team, but managed to break away and score. Again, I won’t name everyone even though they all deserve it. We won this game 29/0.
Congratulations new u18 captain Rhett on your teams wins today.
For me, the highlight of the day was right after coming off the field against solo. There were 15 boys, a true team, all exhausted after a huge game of rugby. I asked them, who of you guys will volunteer to play back To back against another big team. One of the players (Jesus) stood up and addressed his team by saying this “we are a team guys, let’s all play and give it our best and help each other out if we’re tired.” EVERY SINGLE MEMBER OF OUR TEAM, u16 and u18 alike agreed with enthusiasm and walked back out on the field. 120 mins of straight hard rugby and it was extremely impressive. That was true teamwork and sportsmanship. This is the kind of thing that makes me beyond proud to be a stingray coach.
In summary, our boys played with amazing structure and composure. Their fundamentals were next level allowing them to focus on advanced strategy that benefited them big time. The u16’s stepped up to an extremely
Competitive level of rugby and our u18’s played with the wisdom and structure of a well drilled collegiate team, looking well beyond their years.
I am extremely impressed by not only the wins, but for not allowing a single score against us all day. Well done stingrays, we the coaches could not be more pleased with our season opener.
Thank you everyone. See you Monday.
U14: Coach Richard
Today we had a great start to the season for our U14's. Many thanks to all players and parents that made the drive up for a mix and mash up U14 game. The boys got lots of great experience with many seeing the speed and intensity of the game for the first time. A number of excellent try's from Davis and Owen put the Stingrays over the top. Great supporting play from Niko, Joe, Giddeon, Nathan and Everett. Many thanks to Eric for playing both the U14 and U16's match.
This was an informal match-- so no man of the match this week.
We look forward to making improvements this week at training. Please attend both Tues and Thurs so we are ready for next Saturdays match -- In SB at Elings park.