Rockaway Rugby Fisheads Fall Short To Charles River In Beantown
Players, coaches, friends and honored guests boarded the bus for Charles River, Boston last Saturday with high hopes of a victory and a great time. One goal was achieved and one was narrowly missed.
Rockaway Rugby took the field under the lights looking the strongest they have been in years. A backfield which had all the tools necessary (strength, speed, and skills) and a large mobile pack bolstered by the addition of Welsh Rugby sensation Craig Hill. Their hosts also looked impressive, though considerably smaller; there was an obvious advantage in the youth department.
The first 15 minutes of the match had the Fisheads on their heels as Charles River punched it up the field and looked as if they might control play. Noteworthy was the fact that the backline defense never faltered for Rockaway and continuously made the open field tackle. Things changed a bit towards the middle of the half. After fielding a tough kick, Fullback Brendan Lunny avoided to 2 would be tackelers and pop kicked the ball ahead into the left corner, after grubbing it ahead twice more, Lunny dove on the ball in the try zone for a 5-0 lead. After giving up the lead on a blocked kick, the Fisheads slowed down the game and started to control play. The half ended with Charles River ahead 7-5.
Rockaway came out in good shape for the 2nd half. A Kevin Wrafter penalty kick had gotten them back the lead and the Fisheads were dominating scrums. The problem however was in the line outs. Usually a great strength, Charles River was doing a bang up job of defending and disrupting the Rockaway throws. The Fisheads soon gave up the lead on a long try by the New Englanders.
With the score 15-8, Rockaway put out a ceaseless assault for the final 15 minutes. After numerous bone crushing hits by Craig Hill, Johnny McMorrow and Oscar Prince, Grouch McCann went in for the score. Unfortunately for the Fisheads, the conversion went just wide and the game was decided 15-13
Ruggers Pluggers: The Fisheads have the week off due to the second round of the playoffs. All are welcome to come out for the rest of the spring starting with Thursday night practice on April 6th.
The bus ride home was a fun filled adventure with a stop in Boston and lots of high jinks along the way. The tender side of Mike the Russian was on display, among other things. The McCormacks enjoyed the microphone and all was good.
Get well soon to Malibu Guy Mark Aiken, who is recovering from some injuries suffered at the hands of an angry lass while vacationing at Hunter Mountain with some big house buddies.
The next home game for the Fisheads will be on Saturday, April 15 against the Newburg American RFC at Fort Tilden at 1 p.m.