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Middle Schoolers Relish RMC Debut

  • 20 Jun 2019
  • 38 Views

Photos: Gar Szabo

The Rocky Mountain Challenge is a well established youth tournament event and in recent years has served as a high school Regional Cup Tournament for USA Rugby scouts. In 2019, the event added its first girls’ middle school division as well as a Frontier qualifier for women’s 7s clubs building toward nationals. The following recap comes from Superior RFC Girls’ Middle School coach Heather Szabo, who led the Denver-area team in last weekend’s 10s division.

This past weekend, Superior Rugby Football Club, based out of Superior, Colorado, fielded their first-ever Middle School Girls team at the Rocky Mountain Challenge Rugby Tournament. The 18-player roster was comprised of ruggers from six area teams: Superior, Highlands Ranch, Parker, Glendale, Larimer and Weld County.

Photo: Gar Szabo

As a new coach and first-time participant in this prestigious event, the learning curve was steep. With players coming from multiple programs, Saturday morning was the first time they set foot on the pitch together as a team. Communication was emphasized during the warm-up, as players were only starting to build trust with each other.

Photo: Gar Szabo

They took a narrow loss in the first game due to playing a bit bunched and not offloading the ball as confidently as they are capable. By the second match, the coaches had a better idea of individual athletes’ skill level and playing experience, adjustments were made, and confidence in play was starting to build. Unfortunately, the much bigger and more polished team from Texas took the win.

Photo: Gar Szabo

Entering Day Two, the coaches again reconvened with a new game plan and the girls arrived at the pitch excited to play more rugby. They came out moving the ball with confidence, rucking hard for possession and closed gaps when going in for tackles. As their fitness was showing, the game clock unfortunately ran out for the Superior FRC team and they were handed their third loss in as many games.

Photo: Gar Szabo

The girls were not deterred. Their rugby was improving every minute they were on the pitch together. In addition to the forwards having their set plays for lineouts, the backs also came up with their own secret weapon with a deep punt, followed by a speedy run for recovery. This play worked in their favor multiple times during the last game. This last game had the girls on the pitch playing great rugby for nearly 50 minutes and they took the victory! Celebrating their victory with the new friends made was a great way to wrap up the long weekend of rugby.

ROCKY MOUNTAIN CHALLENGE

MIDDLE SCHOOL 10s

5785 29-12 Superior

5785 29-22 Texas

5785 39-12 Superior

Texas 36-32 5785

Texas 62-15 Superior

Superior 32-27 Texas

HS TIER 1 15s (RCT)

Rhinos 94-0 EIRA Midwest

Rhinos 24-0 5785

Rhinos 47-5 Colorado

5785 27-15 Colorado

5785 32-0 EIRA Midwest

Colorado 27-5 EIRA Midwest

3rd: Colorado 22-12 EIRA Midwest

1st: Rhinos 55-14 5785

HS TIER 2 15s (RCT)

Colorado 48-26 5785

5785 45-34 Colorado

Colorado 46-43 5785

5785 44-30 Colorado

CLUB 7s QUALIFIER

Rocky Mtn Magic 42-0 Black Magic

Rocky Mtn Magic 21-5 KC Jazz

Rocky Mtn Magic 50-0 Peaks

KC Jazz 21-12 Peaks

KC Jazz 19-12 Black Magic

Black Magic 33-10 Peaks

3rd: Black Magic def Peaks

1st: Rocky Mtn Magic 26-5 KC Jazz

Superior #RugbyColorado

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