Referee: Freitas, Larry
This game was for practice more than anything else, a teaching enterprise if you will. It was decided to play 25-minute halves since both teams had been involved in combined forward and backs training prior to kick off for quite some time. UCSC has a lot of new players, but with the combination of their handful of veterans, they were able to use their overall athletic ability to win, as after a 14-7 lead at halftime, the Banana Slugs pulled away with four more tries. CSUMB has a veteran team for the most part, but one of their key players is now studying in Europe for the year, and work commitments might have kept a few more from playing. UCSC was by far the better team in the backline. Neither team had an advantage in the scrum or lineout, and I have to praise both sets of forwards for their play. Both teams have their speedster runners, and if they get the ball, it’s off to the races or goal line. One last note about the match is that the Otter gals didn’t quite line the pitch correctly. Hopefully, this won’t happen again!
There is another game to report, played back on October 8 at Santa Clara University, where the Alumni XV took down a Varsity XV, depleted by their best players away for a 7’s tournament in San Luis Obispo, 41-22. It must have been nearly 100F on the turf, and therefore 25-minute halves were played. The turf field there is starting to look like a worn out carpet. Time to chuck it and reinstall real grass instead. Terry Ryan, Class of 1977, was absent from the game, as he was ill. I believe he might have played in every alumni-varsity match since he had graduated. The prior night the Fr. Coz Rugby Alumni Banquet was held on campus, well attended. Nice to see Johnny Wallace, Saxon Wraith, Bill Wagner, Dave Alvarado, Mike Mitchell, Karl Winkelman, and fellow Pelican John Coppinger, and our former coach Mickey Ording in attendance. Coppinger, having just arrived back in the country from a trip to Europe, ‘gave’ me the assignment to referee the alumni game at the dinner. I gladly accepted.
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