Sunday, February 28, 2016

Opening Day: High School Boys - East v PAC

East Angels v PAC
PAC scrumhalf Cal Harrington serves the scrum

Opening Day in the Colorado High School Boys Rugby Leagues, and PAC traveled down mountain to take on Denver East High Angels on the Rugby Day. It was blowy and overcast at Heaven as East began their campaign to maintain their state title. The Angels did so convincingly in a match that featured exciting action from both XVs.

The beginning stages of the match were marked by wind-assisted handling errors and early season jitters until ball thrown long in the lineout thirty meters out from the PAC goaline found East openside, Max Cohen, who slipped through the defense and inside the 22 before being brought to ground. Rapid recycle by scrumhalf Cam Pettit saw outside center Yanni Stavropoulus crash through a defensive seam for a try and it was 5-nil for homeboys after 7 minutes.
East dominated breakdown

Fierce contests at the breakdowns, but Angels arriving en masse produced power and pace sufficient to claim possession and forward momentum, and the action remained largely in PAC territory. With 

Denver on the attack, inside center Adam Leonard put center partner Stavropoulus into space 25 out, and the outside center offloaded to flyer, Alex Robinson, who closed and dotted for flyhalf Sam Addie’s conversion and it was 12-0 midway through the first half.

Ball spun from a five-meter wonscrum saw Addie find Leonard after a sweet misdirection and #12 shot through a gap to ground for Addie’s deuce: 19-0 at minute 19.

Leonard got his second score by gathering a well-lofted Addie boot over the defense and hoofing into goal for the try and Addie’s conversion, and it was 26-0 in the 22nd minute for the bonus-point.

Addie, himself, got the next grounding after gaining space 30 meters out and closing in a swervy arc for his own conversion and it became 33-0 after 24 minutes of action.

One more score for the home team prior to referee Rick Goldammer’s halftime signal; Robinson picked up his brace via a shifty, thrifty sprint along touch for 25 meters. Addie’s additional two points made it 40-0 at the half. Angels swarming defense and active offense was expressing a pattern to which PAC was unable to respond effectively.

In the second stanza, PAC came alive and breakdown contest was more competition, less one stop on the road to goal for Denver. Though PAC were reacting to pressure rather than absorbing it, desperate and operative defense kept East from goal early on.

East got another grounding from 8man, Sam Golla, as the big man rambled through traffic for 25 meters before touching down for Addie’s completion and the sig-figs were 47 and zero in the 40th minute.

PAC got on the board with a jinky, elusive 25-meter scoot by inside center Marcelo Mayor. The conversion by scrumhalf Cal Harrington made for tallies of 47 and 7 after 50.

A final try by Stavropoulus, converted by Addie, had the result at 54-7 to Angels at Goldammer’s last whistle.


East – Try: Stavropoulus (2), Robinson (2), Leonard (2), Addie, Golla; Con: Addie (7);
PAC – Try: Mayor; Con: Harrington

Match Official: Rick Goldammer

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