Tigers rugby trumps Chatfield/Columbine
September 6, 2008
FARMER’S KORNER ” Two matches. Two days. Two lopsided wins for the Summit High rugby teams.
Not even 12 hours after the green team blew away Highlands Ranch 51-0 Friday night, the Tigers’ white team dismantled a strong Chatfield/Columbine team 30-12 at Tiger Stadium, Saturday afternoon.
“It was a close game,” Summit head coach Karl Barth said. “They were a good team, and we were playing a lot of young players out there.”
Prior to this season, Barth made the decision for Summit to field two teams in the Colorado rugby league. The Tigers have both a green and a white team playing on the same level, the white team being made up mostly of younger players, though their record wouldn’t show that.
“They are now 2-1,” Barth said of the white squad. “Their only loss is the the only other undefeated team in the state (besides the Summit green team).”
The Tigers showed early in Saturday’s match that opponents shouldn’t underestimate Summit’s “second team.”
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Dominating possession early in the first half, Summit built an early 5-0 lead when freshman halfback Hailey Anderson plowed through the Chatfield/Columbine defense for an early score.
Then only a few minutes later, junior flyhalf Becca Lohrenz scooped up a loose ball off a throw-in near the five-yard line and ran in for the try and a 10-0 lead.
“Our set pieces were good today,” Barth said.
Chatfield/Columbine responded with a monster 75-yard run to cut the lead to 10-7.
But then Tigers freshman Kelli Joyce put the game out of reach with two consecutive tries ” one just before the half, the other right after the break.
“Whenever we have a scrum, I just look out for open spots on the field and if I see something open up I try to go for it,” Joyce said. “That’s how I got both of those tries.”
The Tigers added tries by senior Danielle Crangle and Steph McDowell to finish with a 30-12 win.
“I think that we played really well,” Anderson said following the win. “We are learning as we go along and from playing together. I think we are doing well.”
Part of Barth’s reasoning for fielding the two teams was to gain more playing time for younger, varsity-caliber players who may have not seen the pitch as much in previous years.
The move is paying off, as both teams have not only been dominating the league, but also learning along the way.
“When you watch a lot of these new players,” Barth said, “every game they play, you’ve got to like things because they look so much better.”
Joyce, who went down with a knee injury during the second half, feels that her team has made big strides as the season has progressed.
“We are doing pretty well,” Joyce said. “We are communicating a lot out there and getting much better.”
Barth credited his back row as being a highlight to Saturday’s game. He also pointed to freshman Meg Weldon as a standout for switching positions from center to flyhalf just before the game.
“She had a great game” Barth said.
Next on the schedule for Summit is Summit, as the green and white teams square off in a league game Friday at Tiger Stadium.
Joyce hopes that her injury won’t prevent her from taking on her fellow Tigers.
“It should be fun,” she said. “We know that one of us will win, so it will be interesting.”
Bryce Evans can be reached at (970) 668-4634 or at bevans@
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