Tampa, FL — Among USA Rugby South’s clubs, Women’s Division-II, Men’s Division-II, Division-III, and regional subdivisions competed Saturday in incongruent parts of the 2019 Spring Season. The Carolinas/Georgia Women’s D-II teams have yet to finish their regular seasons. The Carolinas/Georgia and True South sides wrapped up their pre-scheduled portions of play. In Florida, squads took part in the first weekend of post-season playoffs.
Women’s D-II Recap
The lone women’s match-up Saturday took place in the Carolinas/Georgia subvidison.
There, the Atlanta Harlequins calmed the Eno River Rage in a 74 to 0 shutout. Atlanta’s Caitline Fricia led the Harlequins with five tries, followed Kristen Bolt with three tries, and Shanice Bond with two scores. Atlanta’s Brittany Wilcox, Kristen Bolt, and Claire Tripton also reached the try zone once each.
Men’s D-II Review
Florida’s one D-II matchup pitted the Naples (FL) Hammerheads at home against the Boca Raton Buccaneers. Naples had a 10 to 5 lead at the half. However, the Hammerheads were unable to hold the lead at the end, being beaten by the Buccaneers 24 to 20. Boca Raton’s Michael Oliver scored all four Buccaneer tries, with two Tristen Gray conversions. Naples also scored four tries. But, the Hammerheads failed to convert any of them, and the club missed both attempted penalty kicks. These would have helped them win the game.
The lone remaining men’s D-II match in the USA Rugby South took place in Birmingham, AL, where the home town Vulcans (RFC) hosted the New Orleans (NOLA) RFC. New Orleans held a 13 to 5 halftime lead, but the Birmingham Vulcans rallied from behind to beat previously undefeated NOLA 22 to 19. Brett Walsh led Birmingham with two tries, with Kwame Little and Nathan Williams each earning one try.
Long time Birmingham Vulcan veteran Michael Laney said the following after his club concluded the contest: “They say history has a way of repeating itself, but forget what they say. We forge our own destiny. With today’s win your reigning, defending champions [Birmingham Vulcans] stamped our ticket to the True South Playoffs next weekend.”
Men’s D-III Wrap-Up
Also, in the subdivision, the Asheville Iguanas RFC 29 defeated the Columbia Old Grey (COLA) RFC 24. Asheville came out to a 22 to 7 halftime lead, thanks to tries scored by Phillip Matt, James Brawner, and Jacob Vertel. Evan Cooling scored COLA’s lone first half try.
However, after halftime, thanks to tries by Jackson Vause (two for game), Eval Cooling, and Devan Griffin, COLA rallied to tack on 17 more points. Nonetheless, a timely try by the Iguana’s Nathan Vertel help preserve Asheville’s 29 to 24 win.
The Savannah Shamrocks secured another stomping for the club, routing the Atlanta Renegades D-III side 72 to 5. Savannah’s Roosevelt Lawrence, Colby Townsend, and Krieg Greco led their team with two tries apiece. Connor Dasher, Liam Globensky, Anton Moore, and Shane Aysen also tacked on one try each for the Shamrocks.
The Augusta Maddogs held on to a second half High Country RFC 17-point rally to secure a 19 to 17 win for the home team. Had High Country converted one more very-late game try, the team would have tied the game. Maddogs Eric Rogers, Moli Victor, and Judson Hickey each scored a try for their club.
The remaining True South Saturday matchup featured the Hurricane’s Panama City’s hosting the Pensacola Aviators. However, the Hurricane’s home advantage failed to help the team, as Pensacola blanked Panama City 44 to 0. Jeremaia Bolabasaga led Pensacola with three tries. Robert Lahr, Gabriel Gourneau, Charles Phillips, Joshua Dick, and Steven Mendez also added tries for the Aviators.