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Rocky Mountain Regional Rugby Report 12.13.13

This Issue: Numbers Raptors Academy v Trident (NZ) – match report Colorado Crusaders – Last Camp in 2013 Air Force Rugby in 2014 EU-Comps: Heineken results by the numbers

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Numbers If this is December 14 , 2013, then there are:

229 70

days before RWC kicks in France

days ‘til March, when Barbos and Raptos begin 4-weekends of double -header PRP home action in the Kettle

70 63 63 49 49

until NSCRO #s 1 & 2 get after it at New Mexico Highlands University

days until NSCRO’s Battle of the Frontier: Pioneers v Bears

days ‘til Super XV Rugby kicks

days until Barbos and Rapto s play their initial PRP matches on the West Coast

days until kickoff 2014 Men’s and Women’s 6 Nations - how’s your fitness regimen coming along? -


Glendale Academy v Trident High School

Raptors and Trident triumphed over frigid temps! image: Trotski

Trident High School, a touring high school squad from New Zealand’s North Island, and Glendale Academy squared off Tuesday evening at the Infinity Park Rugby Complex. In the coolness at the tail end of an arctic cold front, the U-19 sides battled on a rapidly heating StoveTop desso pitch in front of a few hundred bravely dedicated rugby fans. The Bay of Plenty secondary institution is on North American tour and had already notched a pair of wins in Washington State before referee, Paul Emerick, whistled up the action and the lads got after the pill as the sun set behind the Continental Divide and temperatures plummeted. Immediate pressure by the visitors had Academy on its rear leg and only steadfast defense by the home team kept the determined Kiwis from goal early until first five-eighths, Michael Thompson, stripped ball at tackle and romped untouched 25 meters to goal for a 5-nil Trident advantage in the 6th minute. Trident were right back into Raptors territory at the re-start. The New Zealanders direct, center scrum-banging maulwork brought the action swiftly into the birds’ business district and ball swung wide found the Kiwi right wing in space for a hotstep into goal and Trident had another handful after 10 minutes: 10-0 Trident. The travelers worked their maul splendidly, slipping off for short yards repeatedly and gaining significant ground, while Raptors, rusty from half year away the pitch, looked discontinuous at times. Glendale’s first foray into Trident territory was terminated by knock-on, though the efforts of front row, Jesus Flores, inside center and eventual Raptors Man-of-the-Match, Christian Ortega, soon had the homeside back and threatening until mishandles by the hosts had ball returned to dangerous Trident hands.


With Trident the beneficiaries of a wonscrum five meters from Glendale’s goaline, 8-man T-Jay Ranapia scooped ball and jetted into goal for a try converted by the Kiwi standoff; the visitors had increased their lead to 17 in the 22nd minute. Glendale were able to bring play into their opponents’ territory a number of times, yet Trident held up the tackle and static play resulted in possession reversed and Raptors found themselves on the rear leg. Better scrummaging from the Southern Hemisphereans overall and an extremely effective mobile maul meant joy for Trident, while Raptors were their own worst enemy on occasion expressing unforced errors and confounding their own offense. The signal by Emerick at 40 and the lads went to lockers for hydration and instruction with Trident ahead by 17. Trident flowed back into Raptors territory and an over-eager defense saw a penalty awarded five meters from the Raptors goal. A quick-tap and the cagey Kiwi halfback had stolen across for the corner try and a 22-0 scoreline at minute 48. Thompson got his brace, popping out of the loose and jetting 25 meters for the grounding that made it 27-0 with 70 gone. A final Trident score near time by their blindside breakaway, in support of powerful 20 meters advance by the replacement front row, followed by sweet conversion by #10, and the New Zealand schoolboys had the record, 34-0, at Emerick’s last blast. “Trident is a solid team with some really skillful players. Their knowledge of the game and skills are like nothing I've seen in the US at this level,” said Academy head coach Jared Heath and he reflected: “We were one mistake or one dropped pass away a couple of times and I was proud to see our forwards compete and have multiple turnovers in the set piece.” Trident are off to Summit County for snow riding in the Valley of the Blue, at Breckenridge, before returning to the Land of the Long White Cloud. Scoring Glendale – Try:; Con:; Pen:; Trident - Try: Thompson (2), right wing, Ranapia, Karl, #6; Con: Zane (2); Pen:;

Match Officials: Paul Emerick, Gary Hartsell, Marc Nelson

15

15


Colorado Crusaders Camp takes place Saturdays at Mountain Ridge Middle School in the northern reaches of Colorado Springs from 2-4pm. It is open to all high schoolers, 8th grade and up and is cost-free. That would be nada, nichts, and/or bupkes! No out of pocket expense for the highest grade-level instruction available in Colorado as the spring (2014) season approaches. Elite coaches will be on hand to impart current standards of the game to attendees. Pick up your game! – come, see what you’ve got…


“We are currently in our weight training phase and doing well and I’m excited about this upcoming season ,” reports USAFA head coach, Joe Muehlbauer of his Zoomies rugby squadron, “We have a big spring coming up. Air Force will be playing a full D1A schedule, (is entered in) USA Rugby’s Varsity Cup playoffs and we are trying to fit in our Navy match that was canceled due to the government shut down this past fall. We are also set to play in USA Rugby’s College Rugby Championships in June in Philadelphia.” USA Rugby’s D1A category is the top flight college competition in the country. Currently the Zoomies hold a #9 ranking nationwide and Muehlbauer’s 1st fifteen, led by All American Jack Bristol, will be looking to improve on that number in 2014. Also, University of Colorado Buffaloes at #15 and Colorado State University Rams (16) will present formidable in-state opposition for Air Force in the spring. “I'm excited about this up coming season. This is the most we have had on our plate in a long time. I think the guys are up for it and they are ready to play,” predicts the Air Force pilot, indicating he does not expect his charges to attain anything less than the greatest heights.

Coach Muehlbauer, far left, and Zoomies


Pool 1 Won Leinster Castres Northampton Saints Ospreys

Lost Drawn 3 0 2 1 1 2 0 3

MPts 0 0 0 0

13 8 5 1

Pool 2 Toulon Cardiff Blues Exeter Chiefs Glasgow

Won 2 2 1 1

Lost Drawn 1 0 1 0 2 0 2 0

MPts 10 9 7 5

Pool 3 Toulouse Saracens Connacht Zebre

Won 2 2 2 0

Lost Drawn 1 0 1 0 1 0 3 0

MPts 10 10 9 0

Pool 4 Clermont Auvergne Harlequins Scarlets Racing Metro

Won 2 1 1 1

Lost Drawn 0 1 0 2 1 1 1 1

MPts 10 7 6 6

Pool 5 Ulster Leicester Tigers Montpellier Benetton Treviso

Won 3 2 1 0

Lost Drawn 0 0 1 0 2 0 3 0

MPts 13 11 5 0

Pool 6 Munster Gloucester Rugby Perpignan Edinburgh

Won 2 2 1 1

Lost Drawn 1 0 1 0 2 0 1 0

MPts 10 8 6 4

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Heineken Cup - Numbers Pool 1: 5:3, penalties-struck ratio in a fractious affair in France as Ospreys went down in defeat on the road to Castres at Stade Pierre Antoine in an unpretty victory, though four points for Castres still; Ospreys got a losing bonus point on the day; Castres scrumhalf Rory Kockott, 2012-2013 Top XIV Player of the Year, will remain in the blue-white-and-grey jersey after reversing an earlier decision to transfer to Toulon he celebrated that call with four penalty strikes on the day, sufficient for the record and win; 6:1, try ratio in the traveler’s favor as Leinster put Northampton Saints to the sword on Saturday; a hattrick of groundings from wing Luke Fitzgerald and an instance of wizardry from Brian O’Driscoll made for the surprisingly easy road win for the Irish province; Pool 2: 9 points separated the contesting sides in the Halfpenny-Patchell show as #s 15 and 10 accounted for all Cardiff Blues points save for a 72nd minute dot by flyer, Alex Cuthbert, en route to an impressive win over Glasgow Warriors; 16-0 to the hosts in front of a raucous Cardiff Arms homecrowd before a Sean Maitland try late in the first forty made it 16-7 at break; though Warriors were in possession much of the second stanza, staunch Blues defense stymied; Glasgow will rue their poor performance down this season’s road where they did not even earn a losing bonus point in the 20-29 loss; Glasgow now find themselves in unfamiliar waters at their pool’s bottom; 4-from-5 uncommon misses by Jonny Wilkinson from the penalty tee (though he’d a drop) brought Aussie great, Matt Giteau, to the striker’s spot in the Toulon victory; Exeter Chiefs led twice in the first forty, but could not hold their advantage as the French force assumed the leader’s mantle in their tub; Pool 3 1 try by USA fullback, Chris Wyles, in support of the Saracens bonus-point, 39-10 victory over Zebre at the Stadio XXV Aprile in the Italian north country city of Parma on Saturday; Sarries were momentarily at the front of their pool before… 10 Connacht second stanza points were sufficient to the task of overtaking French giants, Toulouse in the south of France on Sunday; the Toulousians were up by a point, 7-6, at the break, but even a Theirry Dusatoir try converted by Lionel Beauxis in relief of homeside flyhalf, Jean Pascal Barraque, could not overcome Dan Parks boot-production of 11 and a Kieran Marmion dot – historic win for Connacht, 16-14, at Stade Ernest Wallon; Pool 4 5 points in extra time by tighthead, Clement Ric, and Clermont Auvergne had the bonus point over Scarlets at Stade Marcel Michelin in 32-11 victory Saturday in the Grupo de la Muerte; In front 6-3 at


break, longtime Canada engine, Jamie Cudmore, grounded first in the 46th minute as Clermont justnow lead the most fractious foursome in the tournament; 4 trys got Harlequins back on track with the bonus point win over Racing Metro in Paris; Racing could muster only a penalty goal in the first half and went to break down, 3-17; New Zealand-born flyhalf, Nick Evans, accounted for 17 Jester numbers on a try, three conversions and a brace of penalty goals in the 32-8 result; Pool 5 22 the Ulster lead after forty over scoreless Benetton Treviso, though the Irish waited until a dot by lock, Dan Touhy, in the 57th minute to claim the bonus digit en route to 48-0 whitewash; Ulster flyhalf Paddy Jackson scored first, last, and often as he notched 17 of Ulster’s numbers at Ravenhill on Saturday in the seven-try win; 4 trys the pair for Leicester and Montpellier at Welford Road, but 18 points from the boot of Tigers #10, Toby Flood, and a Ryan Lamb dropped goal proved more than the dozen booted through by Toulouse halfbacks, Jonathan Pelissie at #9, plus a conversion from #10, Francois Trinh-Duc, in the 4132 victory of the home team; Pool 6 22 points up at the half, Munster went on to record a 36-8, bonus-point win over Perpignan at the Thomond Park on Sunday; a poor first forty became a dismal full 80 for the French as James Hook’s squad watched the good ship Heineken Quarterfinals sail toward the horizon; 4 table points only for Edinburgh now after a dour home show at a wet and windy Murrayfield v Gloucester; Cherry-and-Whites are hot on Munster’s heels, while Edinburgh repair to the castle for consideration.

Upcomers: Friday, 12.13.13

Glasgow v Cardiff;

Ospreys v Castres

Saturday, 12.14.13

Treviso v Ulster; Toulon v Exeter Saracens v Zebre; Perpignan v Munster Scarlets v Clermont; Connacht v Toulouse Leinster v Northampton

Sunday, 12.15.13

Harlequins v Racing Gloucester v Edinburgh Montpellier v Leicester

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