Monday, January 26, 2015

2015 Rugby Texas Boys Rankings - Preseason Week 3

Lamar (blue) tackling a determined St Pius X ball carrier.
Red v Green Scrimmage
St Thomas played a six period scrimmage against Strake Jesuit on Friday night at Strake Stadium. Strake played dominantly through all six periods displaying solid ball-handling in their Varsity backline and consistently running for the gaps in both squads (except for that red-headed lock/pile-driver who did not need a gap!). St Thomas started off tackling well, but they could not close the gaps quickly enough. Once Strake determined this, they were off to the races. St Thomas has a lot of size and even more numbers (three full squads traveled across town). Strake may have had the upper hand in this scrimmage, but St Thomas will return for the conference match better prepared.

Strake hosts Jesuit Dallas on Friday and St Thomas hosts New Orleans' Brother Martin. For a strong, but less-than-polished effort, Strake bumps up to the #12 slot this week. St Thomas remains at #8 and is checking their six for up-and-comers.

Plano at The Woodlands
On Saturday, Plano Rugby traveled to The Woodlands for a pre-season friendly. This was SAT weekend in the Plano ISD, so Plano arrived lighter than they expected. The Woodlands owned the JV match. However, Plano put up a good fight in the Varsity match even with Woodlands contributing two backs to Plano to round out the side. With only a few minutes left, The Woodlands held a five point lead in a tight match. The home team capitalized on a penalty on Plano for a double-move at the goalline and moved the ball downfield to put the game away, 27-17.

Plano is idle next week and remains at #5. The Woodlands move up to the #3 position before traveling to Westlake next week for what should be a telling preseason match.
Lamar & St Pius X at line-out time

St Pius X at Lamar

St Pius X & Lamar were originally scheduled to play Galveston Ball HS in Galveston this Saturday, but Ball did not have any players CIPP'd. Coaches Locke & Wheat were not about to let their players down and they convened on Western Academy for a no conversion scrimmage. St Pius X's experience found in-goal six times and prevented Lamar from a similar visit. Lamar has stayed solid for new team. We hope to see some great matches from them going forward this Spring.

St Pius X climbs to 16th place for the win. Next week, both teams are idle.

Rock Rugby at Memorial HS

Rock Rugby (A club servicing the Round Rock ISD) traveled to Houston to play a controlled scrimmage against Memorial HS on Saturday. Both squads graduated many players last year and have plenty of new players this year that needed rugby minutes before the season starts. No score was kept so this match was not used as a consideration for rankings beyond the fact that both clubs made the match happen. Rock Rugby only slides down one spot because Strake played so well on Friday.

Memorials hosts Jesuit Dallas next Saturday while Rock rugby is Idle.
Lamar on the move forward
Katy at Allen

The Katy Barbarians made the long trip North to Allen, TX to face the Gentlemen of Allen HS. Katy traveled light due to several players contracting influenza, but this was a chance for them to show the depth that they were surprised to see turn out this Spring. The depth proved true as Katy's Freshmen blanked Allen's JV 31-0. This was Allen's first ever JV rugby match. The Barbarians' Varsity squad won a hard-scrabble affair in the second match. Katy led 17-0 at half time, but that only served to fire up the hosts as they answered back with 22 points in the 2nd half and forced Katy to scramble in an extra three tries to secure a 32-22 victory.

Katy slides into 2nd with this strong road win. The Barbarians are idle next week, but expect them out in force as their coach, Ryan Marshall, starts at flyhalf for HURT in a men's D2 match against the Katy Lions RFC in Katy City Park. Allen holds steady in the rankings and hosts the Alliance Black Knights in the first Conference match of the season.

This Is Texas Rugby's 26 January 2015 Rankings for Rugby Texas Boys 

All pictures courtesy of Seth Chandler, supporter extraordinaire of Lamar HS Rugby!

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