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Appropriate Touching

HAIL PELICUS!

Appropriate Touching

 

The rugby action is hot and heavy as every league is currently in play. Referee are doubling up and working harder than ever adjudicating games and keeping players within the bounds of law. In keeping with their history of wise, thoughtful and timely decisions USA Rugby has decided that the rest of the world is, in fact, on to something and have issued the long awaited ruling on the scrum engagement.

 

Yes Nine!

The Rugby Committee has just voted (in a rare show of unanimity) to adopt the silent version of ‘yes, nine’ for all levels of adult rugby. The verbal ‘yes, nine’ will remain in effect for U19/high school and younger. This is meant to take effect immediately – games played March 1 and after.

 

So, for games within the NCYRA, the protocol remains the same: a verbal acknowledgement (‘yes, nine’) from the referee that the scrum is stable and the ball may be put in.

 

For games within the NCRFU, a silent acknowledgement to the scrumhalf that the scrum is stable and the ball may be put in. This can be done by touching the scrumhalf or by a signal.

 

The front-row briefing should include agreeing with the scrumhalves in what way the touching will be accomplished and what the signal will be. Typically, the touch is either in the middle of the back (between the shoulder blades) or on the shoulder. The signal can be a thumbs-up, a nod, a play-on gesture, but needs to be demonstrated to the scrumhalves before the game.

 

East Midlands Exchange Is Imminent

 

One of the great traditions of Pelicanland is the East Midlands exchange, where in the spring of an even numbered year a few English tourists are shown the beauty and majesty of rugby in California in all her glory, while in the fall of odd numbered years a few lucky Pelicans travel to the Sceptered Isle and experience the pomp and pageantry of rugby in the land of its birth. This is one of the greatest experiences one can have as a referee and I should know – I went on the last one. Friends for life will be made and memories to treasure, but it all starts at home. Those who host visiting referees have the best chance at being selected to go. That being said we are busy preparing for the arrival of our English guests and one of the highlights of the tour is a trip to Yosemite valley. This from Dr Bruce Carter:

I’ve got rooms for Yosemite Lodge for Tuesday, March 18th.


With three visitors, I got three rooms. We can get up to nine people in them if need be.


James, you might want to ask in HP for those who want to join us on the hike. I ask Pelicans to pay $100 towards the room (which are about $250 each) and I cover the rest for the visitors’ sake.


We’ll meet in the valley on the 18th and have dinner at the Lodge. The hike commences at dawn on the 19th. The route chosen will depend on weather conditions (and the physical state of the attendees). In the past we’ve gone up Yosemite Falls and Nevada Falls.

 

On That Topic

 

A repeat of the previous call for hosts:

We urgently need volunteers to host incoming exchange referees. Hosting goes a long way towards fostering good will and is one of the considerations for choosing who we send out in exchange. We need one host for incoming Virginia referee Chris Davis who is coming in March. In March we will also host incoming East Midlands’ referees, so a number of hosts are needed as well as some who cannot host but can take our visitors around. Volunteers should contact Bjorn at bjorn.stumer@gsa.gov.

 

 

And Now, On To The Games…

 

Date: 02/19/2014

California 74 – Santa Clara 13

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

Perfect weather for a great rugby game on this Wednesday evening. No clouds, no wind, fresh air.

Santa Clara got stuck in traffic coming from the other side of the bay, and kickoff had to be delayed by 15 minutes to allow them to have a proper warm up.

 

The first half started with two very strong teams playing rugby. Both teams were very fast, very fit, and very precise, both in attack and defense. I don’t recall a single turnover at a ruck during the whole game: support was always there.

Cal scored first with a converted try at the 7th minute, but Santa Clara replied quickly with a try at the 13th minute (7-5). Both attacks were very strong, but both defenses were even stronger, with good tackles by both teams. We had to wait for the 28th minute to see Cal score an other try. They scored again at the 34th minute to take a 19-5 lead, but the last 5 minutes of the half were Santa Clara’s. They scored a penalty goal at the 35th, and a try at the 39th, to go to the break only 6 points behind (19-13).

 

The second half was very different. Both teams kept playing very good rugby, but Santa Clara wasn’t able to keep up with the pace. Their defensive line wasn’t as strong and fast anymore, many tackles were missed. They had a few nice attacking plays, but they were not fast enough to score. They burned all their energy in this great first half of rugby. Cal scored 9 tries in the second half, and won the game 74-13.

 

Many thanks to Tom Wright and Kevin Donnelly for their great job as assistant referees. Thanks to both teams for this great game, and for reminding me that some games can exhaust me.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Cal Poly SLO 75 – UC Santa Barbara 3

Referee: MacDonald, Neil

Assistant Referee: Andy Doukas

Touch Judge: Gary Brown

 

The total of points scored in this game was the same as the temperature at kickoff on a glorious day in San Luis Obispo. Firm pitch, blue skies and a tricky gusting wind which played havoc with restarts and kicking from hand throughout the match. Cal Poly were too strong for UCSB, dominating the scrum and the breakdown, and feeding quick ball to their pacy and extremely well-drilled backs, who broke or rounded the Gaucho back line with a combination of guile, speed, strength and great running lines, and ran in seven of the Mustangs’ eleven tries. UCSB didn’t have much luck all day. In the second half at one point the Gauchos had a scrum advantage for a Cal Poly knock on. They gathered the loose ball, set a good ruck, recycled it quickly and spun good front foot

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ball to their back line, setting off on a foray into the Mustangs’ half. No sooner had I called advantage gained than the next pass down the Gaucho’s back line was intercepted for a Mustang try under the posts. UCSB stayed positive throughout the match, despite the avalanche of tries conceded and the misery compounded by the excellent kicking of Cal Poly’s captain #10 Alex Frost (10 from 11). Particular kudos to UCSB’s #12 who charged every conversion as if he was racing Carlin Isles over 25m, and came extremely close to

blocking a couple. Cal Poly move to 2-0, and travel to St Mary’s next weekend.

 

Thanks to Andy Doukas and Gary Brown for their excellent help on the touchlines.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

California 32 – UCLA 10

Referee: Ranaweera, Aruna

 

Unbeaten Cal hosted UCLA in a PAC conference matchup in front of a capacity crowd at Witter Field which included Cal flag-bearers, cheerleaders, and 65F sunny skies. Adding to the overall spectacle, this was the first rugby match televised live by the national Pac-12 TV network. As usual, Cal provided professional instructions for pre-match logistics including match official parking and the run sheet. (Run sheets are invaluable for high-profile matches to get everyone on the same schedule. Outside of USA Rugby national championships, Cal is the only local team I know that consistently provides run sheets, although I remember SFGG used to provide them a few years ago.)

 

This was a tale of two halves. Cal played uncharacteristically flat in the first half, committing frequent penalties, unforced handing errors, and isolated ball carriers. In contrast, UCLA was the more cohesive and assertive team, dominating both territory and possession to earn a 10-0 lead at halftime. In the second half, Cal displayed more of their customary structure to claw their way back and grab the lead, 13-10, which was not until the 62nd minute. Cal’s captain, #13, deserves recognition for his impressive work-rate, which single-handedly brought his team back into the game. UCLA resisted fiercely right to the end, but could not overcome Cal’s fitness advantage, which became evident late in the 4th quarter. Despite a subpar performance (by their lofty standards), Cal still won comfortably, 5 tries to 1.

 

Much thanks to Rob Hendrickson and Kevin Donnelly for doing a solid job as AR’s. Also thanks to Dave Williamson for hosting the match officials to dinner at his home in Berkeley after the match.

 

PS: This game will be replayed several times this week on the Pac12 network.

 

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

California B 83 – UCLA B 5

Referee: Lew, Tim

 

Game was clean and fast. UCLA didn’t have the depth to play two full games against a fit, disappointed Cal 2nd side. Cal subbed a number of young players in within the first half.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Chico 21 – Marin 12

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

First try by Marin early in the game, and that’s all that got scored in the first half. 7-0 Marin. Chico scored early in the second half, to tie 7-7. But Marin scored a non converted try at the 15th minute, to take the lead again. At the 30th minute Chico scored 7 points and took the lead by 2 points. Just after the restart, Chico gathered the ball back and ran passed the try line a third time, taking a comfortable 9-point lead 6 minutes from the end. One minute later, Marin was awarded a penalty kick 40m in front of the posts, and attempted to take the points, but the ball went slightly to the right of the posts. They desperately tried to score until the end, but they couldn’t.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Chico State 39 – UNR 10

Referee: Richmond, Jeff

 

Chico was just too much for UNR to handle. Chico’s strategy of not contesting many of the rucks created a defensive line that UNR found hard to penetrate. On offense, Chico has a strong set of forwards that could create several phases of play from a tackle. Then, they could work it out to the wing and find a gap or overlap in the retreating UNR line.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Chico State B 25 – UNR B 10

Referee: Baker, Eugene

 

First of all – This match was Chico MEN’S B vs U of Nevada -Reno B….Score was 25-10, with a lot of open running by Chico State. Wildcats were simply more experienced and deeper.

 

1 yellow card to #21 Edgar Gonzalez (CIPP# 730531) of UNR for three high tackles in the first half – Two in a ten second period…No further infractions by Gonzalez after the yellow.

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Chico State Women 10 – UC Davis Women 31

Referee: Akroyd, Phil

 

A pretty solid and well played game that wasn’t really in doubt, in terms of who was going to win.

 

There were extended periods of advantage which seemed to help with a few knock-ons and silly penalties.

 

UC Davis’ best player was clearly their fly-half who set up the backs for many of their tries.

 

In the B-side game, UC Davis won 7-15.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Humboldt State Women 32 – UC Santa Cruz Women 17

Referee: Wilson, Giles

 

673 mile round trip, quite a trip. If offered, take Friday off and take your significant other. The Ivanhoe Hotel in Ferndale was recently featured on “Diners, Drive-in and Dives” and is also run by a former Cal and Old Blues player – Dave Mogni. Excellent food and some renovated rooms that will make a rugby trip qualify for a weekend away.

 

On to the rugby; both teams were out and warming up an hour before the game. We got the pre-game things done and all the piercings removed (why would one want to play a contact sport with piercings in place?).

 

UCSC looked as though the night in a hotel had served them well as they started strongly building a 12 – 0 lead in the first 20. At which point the home team woke up and worked back to 12 – 10 at the half.

 

In the second half, HSU played to their strength – the back 3. UCSC tried to work to their strengths, which were organization and their half backs.

 

Working to the strengths worked better for the home side who added 4 tries (but only one conversion) to one try for the visitors.

 

Final HSU 32 – UCSC 17

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Life West 49 – South Valley 5

Referee: Bernstein, Bruce

 

Tale of 3 halves. South Valley keeping Life West on its heels in the 1st half. Unfortunately they could not come up with any points, but held Life to only 2 unconverted tries in the first half. From the start of the 2nd half Life went wild scoring another 7 tries with some great runs by its two half backs taking the ball up past the game line causing South Valley to commit at least 2 tacklers. Third half was a draw, with Life hosting an incredible after-party at their college backyard; while South Valley won a hotly contested boat race by a tongue.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Modesto 17 – Reno Zephyrs 64

Referee: Jury, Jeff

 

A clear, cool, dry day greeted Debbie and I as we made our way to Turlock for the D3 contest between traveling Reno and home team Modesto. Both teams appeared ready, but one had fitness on there side. Reno maintained good spacing and sharp running angles scoring 5 trys a half slotting 70% of their kicks. The Harlots managed a try a half and 50% conversion rate for a score of

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64 for the visitors and 17 on the home team. My wife commented on the train activity in Turlock saying their had to be at least 5 or 6 during the game. I said no just one, the Reno Zephyr through Modesto.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Olympic Club 12 – OMBAC 28

Referee: Bretz, Paul

 

Old Mission Beach Athletic Club moved to 2-1 with a 28-12 defeat of Olympic Club Saturday in Pacific Rugby Premiership play.

OMBAC overcame an early 12-0 deficit to beat O-Club.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Sacramento State 17 – San Diego State 46

Referee: Tucker, Chris

 

The visiting Aztecs started out well, scoring first after sustained pressure on Sac State. They would have had another had their centre not needlessly held back the last tackler when the wing had the goal-line in sight. As it was, the hosts scored three tries in reply during the first period, two from deep inside their own half. Both featured excellent back line hands and fast, penetrating running. The third came from a muffed restart, which was gathered and shortly thereafter was scored by captain Travis Haugens.

 

At the half it was 17-17, very much against the run of play, but Sac seized their chances where the Aztecs did not.

 

The second half was a closer reflection of the Aztecs’ territorial dominance, and they worked in another 5 unanswered tries to leave the result in no doubt.

 

Good spirit on both sides, a pleasure to referee. Thanks to R and Ron for their assistance on the sidelines.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

San Jose Seahawks Women 0 – Sacramento Amazons 49

Referee: Tetler, Jen

 

With the dissolution of two D1 teams, the women’s D2 teams have some really good rugby going on. This weekend’s game started off with some back and forth up and down the field. The Amazons scored first wide off of an advantage. The game stayed pretty close for a while, but eventually the size, speed, and support play of the Amazons wore down the Seahawks. The half ended with a fourth try by the Amazons and a score of 20-0. Even with the game not going in their favor, the Seahawks never gave up. They fought hard and had good numbers and positioning, but a few ball-handling errors and lost scrums made it so they weren’t able to get a try. Sacramento scored 5 times in the 2nd half and were able to convert twice. Final score was 49-0.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Santa Clara Women 36 – Sacramento State Women 37

Referee: Kenny, Stephen

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Santa Rosa JC 59 – Humboldt State 5

Referee: Byrnes, Bryant

 

Obviously not a close game. Santa Rosa was lightning quick and relentless. Pick it, pick it, pick it, then wham, out to a good set of backs.

 

But Humboldt not only showed up, but played hard the entire game. No quit. Indeed, they scored the last points in the game.

 

Referees- nothing is more lovely that a game on the Santa Rosa pitch on a fine day. Accept that assignment.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

SF Fog 12 – Humboldt 52

Referee: Valerio, Stephen

 

An excellent day for rugby; sunny and cool. The 2 squads had excellent chemistry, with the forwards cracking me a few times and teams being constructive in their conversations. A note to other squads, asking a clarifying question is always appreciated. A relatively close 22-12 match gave way to some one-way traffic in the second half as Humboldt, which had travelled in strong numbers, used their backs to bang in 6 more tries. Their centers were particularly effective, though their kicking game left some points behind. I did appreciate the final kickers confidence. “I’ve seen other people do this.” He went 0-2 with his attempts at the posts.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

SF State 19 – Fresno State 27

Referee: Gordon, Preston

 

A good game, 5 tries to 3, and 10-5 at halftime to FSU. SFSU scored twice in the last few minutes to make things interesting.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

SFGG Women 63 – Berkeley All Blues 14

Referee: Wilson, Dan

 

The game started 15 players on 14 with the All Blues only having 14 players. Quickly, that number dropped with the first of three injuries. The heart of the All Blues and the great tackling by their center could not hold back the teamwork and aggressive play from the Golden Gate women. Halftime score SFGG 24 – All Blues 0. Number of players on the field at halftime: SFGG 15 – All Blues 11.

 

The All Blues determined to stay with their 11 players instead of taking a forfeit and having some extra SFGG women join. The third quarter was much like the first half with SFGG running wild and All Blues showing nice rugby, but the lack of numbers made support play difficult. The All Blues did have some light shine through with two late converted tries.

 

Overall, it was an enjoyable game to watch and referee. Final score: SFGG 63 – All Blues 14.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Sonoma State 41 – Cal Maritime 26

Referee: Bertolone, Cary

 

Great day; I’ve never reffed at Sonoma State. Game started out evenly matched. Cal-Maritime scored first at 15 minutes; Sonoma State tied it 7-7 five minutes later. CM was up 14-12 at half and they were up 21-19, but Sonoma State took control with 4 tries about half way through the second half. Long runs from their loose forwards and backs gave them control to win 41-26. Good game by both sides!!!

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

St. Mary’s College 57 – Santa Rosa 19

Referee: Hinkin, James

 

A postcard day in Moraga was the setting for St Mary’s hosting Santa Rosa’s D1 side in a non-league friendly. With an official national assessor on the match to make sure all was well, one can imagine how well things went when 2 more national assessors decided to stroll up and watch the game. The game itself was expected to be fast and furious and didn’t disappoint. Santa Rosa used great pressure to slow down the speedy St Mary’s attack and competed at every breakdown. Turnover ball produced a kick into the danger zone for Santa Rosa to chase and the ensuing pressure rattled the St Mary’s wing in coverage. Santa Rose jumped on the loose ball and got on the board first, 7-0 with the difficult conversion. The Gaels wasted no time in answering with a converted try of their own as they reacted well to being unexpectedly behind. As the half wore on the action was back and forth – serving as a showcase for the Gael’s fullback’s prodigious boot – until Santa Rosa finally broke through a second time for another converted try. St Mary’s waited as long as they could to reply with turnover ball spun wide to their enterprising #13 who beat several tacklers with a mazy run to pay dirt under the posts. 14-14 at the half and it was obvious this was a cracker of a match.

 

The second half started much the same way as the first did with both sides exchanging tries. At the midpoint of the second period, however, St Mary’s started to show why they are the #1 ranked collegiate side in the country. A well worked try resulted in – as expected – a kickoff and the Gaels started moving the point of attack, spinning the ball wide to their fullback inserting himself into midfield. A good line and a handoff and he was away, dishing off to support for an immediate try. This would happen later in the match as Santa Rosa struggled to keep up with the fitter students. The game was being stretched out and only one team was setting the pace. Santa Rosa did themselves no favors as they lost their influential #10 to a sin bin for repeat naughtiness for what turned out to be the final 10 minutes of the game but by then the scoreline was out of reach. A very well played game by two very well coached teams.

 

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

St. Mary’s College B 64 – Santa Rosa B 29

Referee: Johnson, Lee

 

A fast paced game played on an unseasonably hot February afternoon with a total of 15 tries, with some excellent rugby played by both sides.

St Mary’s scored within the first five minutes and despite a quick response from Santa Rosa, took complete charge of the first half, with the half time score being 47-10.

St Mary’s then made a number of changes throughout the second half which made for a more even contest, with Santa Rosa edging that 19-17.

An enjoyable game to referee with both sides committed to playing an expansive game.

 

Date: 02/22/2014

St Mary’s C 91 – Santa Rosa C 5

Referee: Pescetti, David

 

When a college team plays a high school team what you would expect to happen happened. SMC was too big, too fast, and too strong.

 

SR played well. They were able to contest at the rucks and was able to capitalize on a mistake by SMC to score their only try.

 

Santa Rosa had a strong showing for their level. I would hate to go up against them if I were in highschool

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Stanford 68 – San Jose State 5

Referee: Tiatia, Nome

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Stanford B 34 – San Jose State B 10

Referee: Parkinson, David

 

the game was sloppy affair with both sides knocking on early and often and some issues getting the ball cleaned out at the ruck. as the game progressed the home team proved to be the better disciplined, more patient, and more calm team and came out on top.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Stanford Women 69 – Cal Women 17

Referee: Pohlman, John

 

Stanford 69 University of California 17

A.R.’s

Nome Tiatia

Justin Lam

 

Stanford woman hosted University of California this past Saturday. Stanford’s field was in perfect shape for parents weekend. A large crowd saw a much more competitive game then the final score would indicate.

Stanford’s #15 Chelsea Harris led the scoring with two first half scores. In all Stanford woman scored six try’s in the first half. All but one by their dominating back-line. None of the Stanford backs stood out…they all did.

The lone forward try in the first half was scored by Stanford’s open side flanker, Lai Turn.

The Cal tackle count was through the roof. Cal played great defense but the Stanford back-line was simply to organized. When Cal did attack with ball in hand the Stanford defense did not bend. In the first half Cal rarely broke the gain line.

 

At half time the Stanford band entertained the fans and officials.

 

Cal was able to free up their #15 Lauren Butler, possibly the fastest and most skilled runner on the field, for two second half try’s.

The second half saw Stanford scoring five more try’s to Cal’s three.

Of note Stanford captain #8 Ali Gleason converted 7 of her 8 attempts at goal. Many from the sideline. Ali is a two sport athlete and her soccer skills were easy to see.

All in all the game was fun to participate in. Cal’s captain Gen Ireland was professional and respectful as was Ali.

Good luck to both programs.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Stanford Women B 51 – Cal Women B 0

Referee: Carter, Bruce

 

It was a long Rugby Day, as in years gone by, wearing a couple of hats and putting some miles on the Pelicanmobile.

 

I left home at 8:30 for an 11 o’clock kickoff at Stueber Family Stadium at Stanford, where it was Parents’ Weekend. The weather cooperated, as it generally has cooperated with everyone but the farmers and the skiers this season (and those who eat food grown in California, later, when prices will probably rise).

 

The teams wanted to preserve the legs of some players who might see duty in the following A side match, so it was agreed to play 25-minute halves. This allowed me the opportunity to catch my grandson’s game in San Jose between acts at Stanford.

 

The Cardinal seconds featured the back-attack customarily associated with their firsts, scoring early and regularly.

 

One referee moment of note came late in the game when Stanford elected to go for goal on an easy-distance penalty. The kicker held the ball in her hands and waved off the tee-bearer. I casually asked, “Are you going to drop-kick it?”

 

“No”, she replied, proceeding to punt the ball.

 

I was hoping it would go through just to see what would happen. The in-goals are deep on the Farm and I’m sure it would have landed and been playable, and I probably would have had to announce “Play on” in an attempt to dissipate the confusion.

 

But it was just wide, caught and made dead by the defenders.

 

Query: should I have offered a scrum option had it gone over the dead-ball line? The kicker certainly thought she was going to for points, and it would have been an unsuccessful kick at goal in her opinion.

 

A quick jaunt down 101-85-280 brought me to Blackford, now called Boynton, where the Seahawks played many great games in the first part of my refereeing career. I got to do the second half of the Pleasanton JV, who are looking strong, and Los Gatos who as a young team are experiencing growing pains.

 

Back to Stanford with the low-fuel light beckoning in vain, such are the time constraints of a Rugby Day. As it was, I had barely enough time to get my radio on Nome Tiatia before his game kicked.

 

I had the pleasure of video-coaching both Nome and David Parkinson, newly with our society from Seattle. Both of these referees did fine jobs with Stanford and San Jose State, and have even better games in their future.

 

Comment heard from a well-known Stanford alumnus as the Cardinal put on a dominant display against the Spartans: “Who kidnapped the Stanford team and put these athletes on the field?”

 

For me, it was time to head home, arriving eleven hours after departing. And as much as I love my faithful Penelope Pelicus, I didn’t begrudge rugby one minute of it.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

UNR Women 60 – USF Women 10

Referee: Bryant, Lee

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

UOP 48 – CSUMB 39

Referee: Rauscher, Eric

 

What a nice pitch, well groomed and lined. A lovely day, warm sun with a cool breeze. UOP , the home team, only had fifteen players and credit to them, they played the whole game through. As can be seen by the score, it was the type of game that went back and forth, with the lead changing many times. Both teams played good, hard rugby with the home squad coming out on top.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

USF 10 – Sierra College 31

Referee: Coppinger, John

 

Sierra came out in full control and took a 19-0 lead at the break. Sierra would have scored more, but ball handling errors allowed USF to only be behind by 19 at the break.

 

USF came out in the second half and really lifted it defensive effort and turn over balls allowed USF to score tries twice (both unconverted) while Sierra tallied two tries (one converted). Big, big hits, although played in good spirits.

 

 

Date: 02/22/2014

Vacaville 61 – Sacramento Capitals 12

Referee: Zanarini, Tom

 

The assignment fairy gets extra points for assigning me a match between home and Sacramento. I attended a class in Sac for work on Thursday and Friday. Friday I spent the night at Phil Akroyd ‘s house where he cooked a fabulous meal of salmon and carp. That meant I didn’t have to drive home Friday only to repeat the trip Saturday.

The match: Vacaville ran away with this one. Dispite the score it was a very good match. Thanks to the coaches, captians and all the players for the great sportsmanship.

 

 

Date: 02/23/2014

St. Mary’s College Women 26 – Fresno State Women 56

Referee: Byrnes, Bryant

 

It was a heavyweight slugging it out with a deft middleweight. No real contest but enjoyable to be a part of.

The Fresno Lady Bulldogs were closer to the Fresno Mastiffs-big players! But remarkably light on their feet and very adept at passing and support. There is a reason they are undefeated.

 

The Lady Gaels, to their credit, figured out it out-if we can not tackle them one on one, we gang tackle them. Grab a leg and wait for the Marines. They also kicked to where the Bulldogs were not, chased, and regained possession frequently.

 

This was my ”bonus” game from Pete-and great fun. Let no one state that Pete lacks a wry sense of humor or does not pay close attention to what his flock- or pod or murder or whatever we are-are up to. Want games? No worries; here you go.

 

 

Date: 02/24/2014

Solano Community College 17 – St Mary’s C 31

Referee: Donnelly, Kevin

 

Newly established college team based at Solano Community College played tough and capable in a game against a well-organized St Mary’s C team. Several well-worked tries off multiple phase play rewarded SCC with points while SMC had no problem responding. I was impressed with the skils and attitude of players on both teams.

 

High School Matches

 

SFGG varsity 36 – North Bay varsity 41

Referee: Eric Rauscher

 

I have never seen SFGGs’ field look so good. The weather was perfect.

Both teams came out of the gates hard and strong and stayed that way throughout the game. Neither seemed to let up on the throttle a bit.

The second half is indicative of the play. Tries were scored by NB @ 4, SFGG @ 9, PK by NB at 11, try by SFGG @18, NB @ 22, SFGG @ 26, NB @ 31, and SFGG @ 34. I think they both have would have just kept going until I died. What a great show of rugby.

 

 

This Week’s Photo

 

The Made 4 TV Team Of Three

TV Team of Three

 

Hail, Pelicus!

For the Senate

Pelicus Pedem Referre

 

 

 

The Biggest Games Of The Year… So Far

HAIL PELICUS!

 

The Biggest Games Of The Year… So

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Far

 

For lo! The Lord thought unto himself that people should be able to swiftly and efficiently move from the East Bay into the shining city of San Francisco when the mood struck them and, verily, should the hipsters and hippies prove too much for one’s soul, speed their egress back unto the East. And the people rejoiced, for unto them came a vision of smooth and timely transport. So the Lord rolleth up his sleeves and proceedeth to design, and he wrought an interchange of a Trinity of mighty freeways, the 80, the 880 and the 580. And the Lord smiled and he was well pleased. Then the Lord looketh a mite further and sayeth unto himself, “Self, thou art powerful, why not allow ease of access for the 980 and highway 24?” So he broughteth in more roadways and fed them all onto the Bay Bridge. The people saw this and sayeth unto him “Look, O Lord, this is nice and all but with all these freeways and highways coming together at one spot won’t it be crowded all the time? Even on weekends? To the point where you can hardly move?” The Lord looketh down and sayeth, “This is all for your own good. I have your best interests at heart.” And the Lord was again quite pleased for his intentions were good and worked them into the very roads themselves.

 

And the Devil looked upon this work and smiled, for he saw that the roads were indeed paved with good intentions and knew well where that led.

 

Promotions

 

It is always exciting to see Pelicans soar higher and so congratulations are in order for the most recent round of promotions. These were also announced at the February Pelican meeting by Paul Bretz, our Referee In Chief.

 

Mike King has been promoted to Performance Reviewer

Lee Bryant has been promoted to C1

Tim Lew has been promoted to C2

David Pescetti has been promoted to C2

 

Promotion is thirsty work so should you happen upon these birds it would behoove you offer them a pint.

 

Touch Judge and Assistant Referee Courses Coming Up

 

The Northern California Rugby Referee Society (NCRRS) will host both a Touch Judge Course and an Assistant Referee Course on Sunday, March 30, 2014, at the San Francisco Golden Gate Clubhouse, Treasure Island, San Francisco, CA. The Touch Judge Course will begin at 9:30 a.m. and conclude at approximately 12:30 p.m. with a written exam. The fee for the Touch Course is $25. The course fee for members of the NCRRS will be paid by the Society.

 

The Assistant Referee Course will began at 1:00 p.m. and conclude at approximately 3:00 p.m. The fee for the Assistant Referee Course is $25. The course fee for members of the NCRRS will be paid by the Society.

 

Lunch will be provided for all students who register for both the Touch Judge and the Assistant Referee Courses.

 

Persons desiring to register for these courses must be CIPP registered members of USA Rugby.

 

Registration may be accomplished as follows:

  • By members of the NCRRS
    • By contacting Mike Malone no later than March 20, 2014, at mgmalone@comcast.net;
    • By persons not members of the NCRRS
      • By registering and paying the course fee by credit card online no later than March 20, 2014, at http://usarugby.org/referee-courses; or,
      • By registering with Mike Malone, the courses’ Lead Trainer, no later than March 20, 2014, at mgmalone@comcast.net and bringing to the course a check in the amount of the applicable course fee(s) made payable to the Northern California Rugby Referee Society.

 

Please contact Mike Malone, mgmalone@comcast.net or (415) 472-2091 if you have any further questions.

And now on to the games…

 

Arguably the 4 best university sides in North America were in action last Saturday as California hosted the University of British Columbia and St. Mary’s hosted BYU. Also, two of the nation’s top club teams met in a local derby as Olympic Club clashed with SFGG on Treasure Island… all of this within a few miles of each other. No other society gets these kinds of games on the same weekend – often not in the same year. It’s just a regular mid-season weekend in Pelicanland, though. Thank your lucky feathers.

 

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

St. Mary’s College 30 – BYU 24

Referee: Smith, Pete

 

This game lived up to its heavy weight billing in every sense. The game had almost everything in it a game should have…scoring in all forms (the drop kick was something I haven’t seen in a while), long runs, big tackles, pick and drives, crashing centers, speedy wingers, expansive play…everything but foul play. Both captains were a dream to work with. On a few occasions while playing a penalty advantage the BYU captain simply asked for the penalty-done. There were lead changes throughout the game with St. Mary’s in the lead at the final whistle. This is a game that could have gone either way with neither team ever having a commanding lead. Phil Akroyd is in for a real treat for the rematch in SLC!

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

California 33 – UBC 24

Referee: O’Neil, George

 

No report received. A writeup can be found here: http://www.calbears.com/ViewArticle.dbml?SPSID=749410&DB_LANG=C&ATCLID=209408110&SPID=126508&DB_OEM_ID=30100

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Olympic Club 10 – SFGG 24

Referee: Bretz, Paul

 

SFGG moved to 3-0 and sole ownership of first place with. A win over Olympic club 24-10. Thanks go out to Nome and Neil for their excellent ARing.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Berkeley 7 – Baracus 20

Referee: Hinkin, James

 

A quick trip north to Berkeley put me in charge of the Berkeley v BA Baracus clash and so I left the house looking forward to some good rugby and I wasn’t disappointed. The rugby day began with an inauspicious start as I checked the email Berkeley sent regarding the pitch location, put the address in my GPS and happily drove onward to… the Pyramid Brewery. Not a bad destination but not where I wanted to go. Apparently the actual field location is marked by a pin stuck into the side of the map and really doens’t have much to do with the address given except that they are both in Berkeley. I eventually arrived at the correct location to see both sides warming up (how did Baracus not have this problem?) and prepared to get the match underway.

 

From the beginning this was a hard hitting match with neither side giving or taking any quarter. Players would stop on a dime and give 9 cents change. The scumhalves often gave me their 2 cents worth. If I had a dollar for every time I heard someone call for off side I would have, well, a lot of dollars. If I had a million dollars I would buy you a green dress, but not a real green dress – that’s cruel. Oh well, in for a penny…

 

The match itself was much more even than the final score indicated. Baracus held a slim 5-0 lead at the half after a back and forth affair in which neither side could gain much momentum. The second half saw Baracus add a penalty and a couple more tries as they figured out how to finish their moves. Berkeley made several breaks and seemed on the verge of scoring several times until a knock on, forward pass or other turnover ended the move. With time expired there was an extended period of play with neither side interested in ending the game, playing through knock ons and penalties until Berkeley fielded a poor kick and started the ultimate movement of the game and finally broke through for a well deserved try under the posts.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Berkeley B 17 – Baracus B 20

Referee: Parkinson, David

 

the game was a relatively clean affair with baracus being the stronger team and berkeley being antsy. the first half saw the visitors quickly out in front 15 – 5 and the home team down a man for a flagrant punch in a ruck that produced a lost tooth.

 

berkeley settled down in the second half to make a game of it, losing at the last second after a near game winning breakaway was knocked on within meters of the try line.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Colusa 5 – Life West 54

Referee: Wilson, Dan

 

It has a been a busy two days with some great rugby for this referee. I started off Friday in Phoenix, flew to Fresno in time for a fantastic high school game between Bullard and Buchanan High Schools, and finished the 24 hours off by driving the four hour drive to Colusa for DIII match up against Life West.

 

Leaving Fresno just after 7 AM, my son and I headed North. It was a beautiful day to go north of Sacramento. Seriously, it doesn’t get much prettier than that area. We pulled into Colusa just after 1130 AM and both teams were already there warming up. Nice to see they were both serious about the match.

 

By kickoff, the home sideline was filled with supporters, and Life West actually traveled with several of their own. At kick off, the tone was set immediately by the intense tackling by both sides. Life West scored first in the 5th minute with a converted try, but Colusa was threatening several times. They finally touched it down in the 19th minute but could not convert.

 

Both teams had energy and enthusiasm spilling over, sometimes when appropriate and sometimes not. After a needed conversation with the captains, the edge was pulled back by all. Life West scored two more converted tries by half time, but the score was not indicative of how close the half really was. Halftime Score: Colusa 5 – Life West 21

 

I overheard the Life West coach telling his team to stay out of the scrappy stuff, to stop making 50-50 passes and to concentrate. Well, they responded. The second half was all Life West, scoring six tries and converting five of them. Fitness was obviously in Life’s favor, but Colusa showed plenty of heart right up to the final whistle.

 

Final Score: Colusa 5 – Life West 54

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Fresno 27 – Sacramento Lions 24

Referee: O’Mahoney, Donagh

 

Overall conditions perfect for rugby. Both teams set out to play rugby from the beginning which lead to a very open game.

Fresno Opened the scoring with a well worked converted try in the first Qtr with Sac Lions responding to tie the game after 24 mins.

Sac Lions enjoyed a period of dominance for the next 15 mins but only managed to score another converted try on the 35th Minute. With the last play of the half Fresno scored in the corner but failed with the conversion to leave the Half time score at 14 – 12 in favor of Sac Lions.

 

Sac Lions increased their lead with another try after 15mins of the second half with Fresno responding with a penalty. On the 24th Minute Fresno took the lead by the tightest of margins with an unconverted try but Sac Lions began to dominate the possession from this point. They worked the ball well and broke through the Fresno defense for another try to lead 24- 20.

On the 32nd minute Sac Lions were in control and should have scored, but Fresno took their opportunity for a quick drop out and moved the ball down the pitch eventually scoring to take the lead in the 34th Minute.

Sac Lions were not able to respond and the match ended with Fresno winning 27-24.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Fresno B 7 – Sacramento Lions B 44

Referee: O’Mahoney, Donagh

 

In the Second game Sac Lions scored 7 tries to Fresno’s 1

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Humboldt 60

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– State of Jefferson 0

Referee: King, Mike

 

A typical Winter day on the North Coast, this time a welcome change from our pattern of dryness, was the setting for this D3 contest between northern neighbors. Jefferson arrived on time for the most part, but short a couple in numbers. The gracious hosts provided some assistance to the visitors, but that was not enough to stem the tide which started fairly early in the contest, and remained evenly throughout.

Humboldt looked good in both set pieces and loose play, and was able to score on long runs, or more close in attacks. Pretty consistently, the host side put 5 tries and 3 conversions on the board in the first half and 5 tries, 2 conversions on the board in the second.

SOJ had its moments, and gamely drove all the way to the try line in the second half, only to lose possession at the last moment. Despite the disparity in points, this match was a battle its entire length. Good job by both sides.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Olympic Club B 30 – Redwood Empire 7

Referee: Tiatia, Nome

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Reno Zephyrs 31 – Aptos 7

Referee: Crenshaw, Jim

 

Arrived in Reno around noon for the 1 pm kick-off. The pitch was running eastwest and the wind was blowing at least 50 mph south to north.

Both teams could use a few more players, as the home team had about 25 and the visitors had 17. Reno proved a little to much for the beachdogs. Aptos held their own for the first half as they came back to score a try after Reno had scored 2 to make it 14 – 7 at halftime, but it was all Reno in the second with the final 31 – 7

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Santa Rosa 32 – EPA Razorbacks 10

Referee: Zanarini, Tom

 

Another great game at For Pete’s Sake field in Santa Rosa. Rosa’s structured gameplan outdid EPA’s open play. It got a little chippy towards the half, but the captains took charge and saw that their teams got on with playing rugby instead of talking about it.

On a side note, if any team needs a referee for their B side, please let the assigner know so the referee can prep for two games.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

SFGG 37 – San Jose Seahawks 32

Referee: MacDonald, Neil

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

SFGG B 46 – San Jose Seahawks B 33

Referee: Pescetti, David

 

Golden Gate started off very strong scoring five first half tries. The Seahawks responded with a late first half surge scoring two tries before half to make it 33 – 14.

 

With everyone becoming fatigued the second half slowed down. The Seahawks outscored Golden Gate 19 – 13, but fell short overall.

 

A good physical game.

 

 

Date: 02/14/2014

Cal Maritime 5 – Santa Rosa JC 55

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

The beginning of the game was very well balanced. Santa Rosa scored first with a try at the 9th minute, but Cal Maritime replied with their own try at the 18th minute. Despite a 5-0 penalty count against SRJC after 20 minutes, the play was quite nice and the scored was tied 5-5. At the 21st minute, SRJC scored a converted try, and everything seemed to change from this point on. SRJC stopped infringing, CMA started to, and they seems to already be tired. Santa Rosa scored 2 more tries in the half, to lead 26-5 at the break. Things didn’t change in the second half, SRJC scored 4 more tries, and won the game 55-5.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

CSUMB 36 – Humboldt State 61

Referee: Carter, Bruce

 

A Humboldt State team with playoff aspirations made the long drive (about 400 miles) to the CSU-Monterey Bay campus for a game under overcast skies, but without a chill in the air.

 

The Lumberjacks proceeded to put a chill into the home crowd, scoring several early and seemingly easy tries, with four of their backs showing pace and penetration ability.

 

The Otters played true to the form they exhibited when I refereed them last month, out-scoring their opponents in the second half but still coming up short.

 

One problem of note, and I hope this will be read and noted throughout Pelicanland: trying to cajole a referee into violating the ethics and procedures of his profession and his organization.

 

A player was issued a yellow card for not-back-any when he tackled an opponent who had quickly tapped a penalty awarded about fifteen meters out from pay dirt. The tap-taker had already scored two tries and was likely to tally another should he be able to gather a head of steam. This is as cynical a penalty as you can commit, deserving of a yellow card anywhere on the pitch in my opinion, and regardless of the prowess of the players involved.

 

After returning to the contest, the cardee then proceeded to taunt an opponent, insulting him to his face while said opponent was conveniently being restrained by two of his own teammates against retaliation.

 

I reached for my yellow and then realized I’d already shown it to this guy once, so he got to see it again and then a red.

 

After the match I was independently approached by three different people associated with that team, each explaining the importance of that particular player to next week’s match.

 

All I can say is, at the time I was not aware of his importance to next week’s match, but he certainly was.

 

They wanted me not to report the red card.

 

This, I believe, is egregious enough that it should be considered a second, and much worse, offense. If it were, I would happily report it as so.

 

I trust that most rugby combatants appreciate that referees strive to be impartial. Would they like to participate in a key game against an opponent whose best player deserved to be sitting because of misconduct and foul play but was able to take part only because of a dishonest referee?

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Fresno State 32 – UNR 26

Referee: Jury, Jeff

 

No report recieved

 

 

Date: 02/16/2014

San Jose State 55 – UC Santa Cruz 24

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

San Jose was too strong for Santa Cruz last Sunday. They took the lead quickly in the first half and didn’t leave many opportunities to their opponents. They scored 6 tries in the first half. 38-0.

In the second half, San Jose scored an early try at the 6th minute, and one more at the 18th. After that they started to substitute many players, which seemed to disorganize the team. Santa Cruz got more attacking balls, and scored their first points at the 24th minute. SJSU scored one last try at the 28th minute, and the last 10 minutes were for Santa Cruz. They scored 3 tries in 5 minutes, to get the offensive bonus point.

 

 

Date: 02/16/2014

San Jose State B 34 – UC Santa Cruz B 32

Referee: Hinkin, James

 

San Jose St kept the momentum going from a solid A side win with a wild finish to the B match. The game started out very evenly with both sides exchanging tries after the expected series of knock ons and errors at the start. The difference in the first half as far as the point total was concerned was the kicking accuracy of the B Slugs as each team scored 3 tries but the Spartans couldn’t convert while UCSC started with a penalty and then added 2 conversions to their try haul to lead 22-15 at the intermission. A lack of discipline and experience led to the sending off of a UCSC player at the 30 min mark and that proved important.

 

The second half was pretty much going the way of the visitors… at least for the first 38 minutes of the second half. This time, however, the kicking gods favored the home side as the 2 UCSC tries went uncoverted and San Jose St added their extras. Then as the half was winding down San Jose St – down by 10 at this point – broke through the line and were off until a recent convert to the oval ball forgot what sport he was playing and took the ball carrier down with a tackle Landon Donovan would have been proud of. Because of this what would normally had been a red card was tempered to a yellow and as this player was contemplating his sins on the sideline the Men of Sparta tapped the penalty and scored, leaving just enough time to convert and kick off. The conversion was good and I announced the final play. The kick went deep to San Jose St’s left side and was spun around to the right, weaving back towards the middle, tackle, charge, tackle, spin to the right and around the edge to score in the corner and snatch an improbable victory from the jaws of defeat.

 

The B Slugs were probably, on the whole, the better side but had to play the final 50 minutes of the match with 14 men and the last 2 with only 13. Both sides played hard and should be set up for the next few years with a promising group of youngsters.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Sierra College 10 – Sonoma State 29

Referee: Byrnes, Bryant

 

 

Quality College D2 rugby-Sierra gave away size, but tried to match with a high work rate.

 

It was 15-5 at half, but Sonoma’s Cal sized and fleet loosies ( are they still called that, oui?) ran hard and straight. A tipping point may have been Sierra’s failure to generate fast ball off of a tackle; ”fighting for

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extra yardage” did not serve them well.

 

 

Date: 02/13/2014

Stanford 61 – Cal 7

Referee: Donnelly, Kevin

 

Fast game, played fairly despite being quite one-sided. Cal was a step ahead in most phases of the game and Stanford had to push the boundaries to try to stay-up (e.g. creeping offside). Overall the score does not reflect how well Stanford played in the face of very strong fast opposition. Thanks to Rob and Tom for AR duties.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: It looks as if the score was reversed here…

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

USF 36 – UOP 19

Referee: van Staden, JC

 

Soveel vir ‘n schedule… Ek vra toe vir saterdag af omdat ek moet werk by die SF Cronicle wynproe…. Maar nee, JC jy hoef nie te worrie nie, ons kry vir jou ‘n game naby… SFU… Net 10 min weg… Doen sommer altwee…. eish!! Die res is geskiedenis.

 

Byde spanne, reken hulle begin sommer vroeg, 10am, so lank hulle net ‘n ref kan kry… Dink die agterlyn het dit berou, nadat hulle so bietjie hulp van die ref moes kry om te verstaan waar die laaste man se voete is.

 

Maar, dit was n lekker wedstryd… By tye 3-4 min rugby sonder ‘n fluitjie… Byde het gekom om rugby te speel, en die telling bord het dit bevestig.

 

Behalwe vir 1 strafdrie teen SFU, was dit maklikste een van die skoonste wedstyde vir die jaar.

 

Sterkte aan beide spanne, dankie vir die gees!

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Cal Women 20 – Chico State Women 19

Referee: Hendrickson, Robert

 

Cal women hosted Chico State women after the Cal/UBC game on Cal’s Witter rugby pitch. Cal women scored 2 unconverted tries in each half, while Chico scored 3 tries and 2 conversions in the first half but was shut out in the second half. Evenly matched teams played a spirited game which could have gone either way.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Sacramento State Women 5 – UNR Women 25

Referee: Wilson, Giles

 

Both teams have obviously been recruiting well and are developing player pools of some size. UNR are a little ahead with slightly more experience at the moment that Sac St.

 

UNR applied a lot of pressure in the 1st half but only came away with one try. During one period of pressure, Sac St lost their captain and hooker to a yellow card.

 

Sac St managed to fight back and scored their own try in the half. UNR lost their captain and half back to a yellow card late in the half.

 

In the second half UNR made more of the overlaps and with fewer handling errors, combined with a tiring Sac St defense, ran in 4 tries. On one occasion the full back executed an excellent 2-on-1.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Santa Clara Women 68 – St. Mary’s College Women 5

Referee: Johnson, Lee

 

A one sided game with St Mary’s struggling to contain a well drilled Santa Clara side. First try scored within three minutes with a further five to follow with a half time score of 34-0.

The second half followed in much the same vain, but St Mary’s got the reward their efforts deserved with a well worked try from their tight head prop. This spurred Santa Clara on to score almost straight from the re-start to finish with a total of 12 tries in the game.

An enjoyable game to referee with the girls fully prepared to listen to what you were telling them.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

UC Santa Cruz Women 18 – Fresno State Women 24

Referee: Bernstein, Bruce

 

UCSC led at half 8-5 & then 18-17; when Fresno State scored with a woman sin-binned to come from behind in an exciting well-played & coached match neither team deserved to lose.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

USF Women 12 – Humboldt State Women 34

Referee: van Staden, JC

 

Met sweet wat nog afdrip na die manne se wedstyd, draf HSU op wat al die pad gekom het om SFU te takkel.

 

SFU se nommers was maar skaars, en het met net 14 spelers op die veld te draf. HSU het die bord oop gemaak, en verduidelik dat hulle op n missie is. Na 3 driee, het dit soos ‘n weghardloop wedstyd gelyk, maar SFU was nie al reg om op te gee nie. Hulle het hard gewerk om hul eerste punte op die bord te sit, net om nog 3 drie teen hulle te kry voor hul laaste drie.

 

Meeste van HSU se driee kom van die agterlyn af, wat n resultaat is van goeie bal besit van die voorspelers.

 

Wel gedaan beide spanne!

 

Dankie vir die tyd aanpassing om by my skedule te kon hou.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Santa Clara University 27 – UC Davis 22

Referee: Akroyd, Phil

 

A great game played at a very nice facility for the College D1-A. The game was tied three times throughout 5-5, 17-17 and 22-22, but Santa Clara scored the winning try with just under five minutes to go.

 

UCD were tactically far more savvy than two weeks ago. This week, they stuck to what they were good at, which was picking and driving and starving the SCU backs of the ability to spread the ball wide in their backs, away from the point of contact.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

UC Santa Barbara 18 – Sacramento State 5

Referee: USA Appointment

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Chico 41 – Sacramento Capitals 17

Referee: Hettermann, Matt

 

Strong winds up in Chico – first half was very tight with the wind at Sacramento’s back.

 

Second half Chico’s discipline and the wind kept territory almost entirely in Sacramento’s side of the pitch, and the scoreline reflected it.

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Santa Clara University B 31 – UC Davis B 56

Referee: Lane, John

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

SFGG Women 40 – SFGG w 10

Referee: Pescetti, David

 

A great scrimmage for the SFGG women. With many inexperienced players, getting a simulated game helped a lot of their players better understand the game. Other women’s team, watch out!

 

 

Date: 02/15/2014

Vacaville 33 – Marin 11

Referee: Levitan, Tony

 

A tight first half (12-11 Vacaville) gave way to a dominant performance by Vacaville

 

This Week’s Photo

Pete Smith carefully observes a scrum in the St Mary’s – BYU match in front of a packed house. Photo by Michael Geib via rugbymag.com

Pete Smith scrum

 

Hail, Pelicus!

For the Senate

Pelicus Pedem Referre

 

 

 

Wet Pelicans

HAIL PELICUS!

 

Wet Pelicans

After the driest year on record in Pelicanland it was refreshing to finally get some rain last weekend. Rugby as a sport originated in England and that means rain and mud. Though as a player I treasured our Mediterranean climate that allowed for fast, dry pitches year round (I was a speed guy and was unlikely to run anyone over but often ran around them), as a referee I can appreciate a little mud now and again. It is a little disturbing driving over the Sunol Grade in February through dry, brown grass on the hillsides so with any luck the rains will continue to feed our thirsty land. It is desperately needed.

 

Tips on Writing Reports

 

Everybody loves to read the match reports submitted to HP, but, please, only the referee should write the report. There have been some double submissions as ARs and Evaluators/Coaches have also written reports. Also, please do not use the assignr match report to report foul play. This should be dealt with as prescribed in pelicanref.com -> Resources -> Match Procedures. Thank you.

 

Our Sport Is Better Than Your Sport, Deal With It

 

Reason #285 why rugby is The Game That Is Played In Heaven: A friend and member of the local rugby community recently moved to Chile and, naturally, there was a going away party. One of the players was chatting with a stranger at the bar when I arrived to place an order and I was introduced as a referee. A look of astonishment appeared on his face as he explained he coached both youth football and adult basketball as well as various other sports and teams previously and had never in his life socialized with a referee. “I wish I could drink with my referees” he said, trying to be cunning. His idea was that the referee was an adversary that he needed to entice to his side so he could get better calls. The thought that we are all brothers and sisters in rugby together and this is just what we do never occurred to him.

 

Society Meeting, Wednesday February 19

Mark your calendars. Time and location is as per usual, SFGG Clubhouse on Treasure Island. Referee Development Committee starts at 6:00 with the general meeting starting at 7:00.

 

Call To Arms

Well it could be a “call to wings” but you can only extend the pelican motif so far. What isn’t in doubt is our pressing need for referees. We currently have uncovered games this weekend and are scrambling to fulfill our obligations. As always, if you have ever thought about taking up the whistle, striding nobly to the center of the pitch and taking command of a match pairing worthy adversaries, then please contact our Scott Wood at rscottwood@gmail.com . He will get you all the information you need to sign up and announce your availability on assignr, our game management software. Even if you have not taken the Level 1 course we could

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still use referees for B/C side matches. As I was informed after last week’s announcement, “It is a requirement… that a referee must have completed the Level 1 Officiating course before officiating any match that potentially may lead to a national championship. It also is a requirement that a referee must first complete the Level 1 Officiating course before attaining a referee grade of C3. Otherwise, picking up the whistle and giving it a go as a referee before completing the Level 1 course may be the step that leads one then to say this OK and I want to take the course.”

 

And On To The Games

 

Date: 02/08/2014

SFGG PRP 23 – Denver 9

Referee: Ranaweera, Aruna

 

In the 2nd weekend of the inaugural Pacific Rugby Premiership (PRP), SFGG hosted the Denver Barbarians on a soggy field drenched by intermittent rain. The PRP is a newly formed competition that consists of former Super League and/or Elite Cup teams from California and Colorado. The game was very physical and featured several passages of inspired continuity, but play was also marred by frequent handling errors and a lack of self-discipline by some players. SFGG led 17-9 at the half and scored 3 tries, all in the first half. The 2 Assistant Referees, Bruce R and Tom Z, provided solid support despite having refereed their own full-length matches earlier in the day.

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Fresno 22 – San Jose Seahawks 10

Referee: Bretz, Paul

 

On a puddle drenched field Fresno defeated San Jose 22-10 despite being down 2 players for the the majority of the second half. Fresno opened the scoring with a try at the 20 minute mark. When San Jose lost a man in the bin for a professional foul Fresno scored 2 more try’s and a conversion to extend the lead to 17-0. San Jose scored a penalty kick to end the half. Midway through the second half San Jose took advantage of a two man advantage to move to within a try, 17-10. Fresno finished the scoring with a 70 meter run despite being down 2 men.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Fresno B 22 – San Jose Seahawks B 20

Referee: Franzoia, Tom

 

Fresno held a 12 – 0 lead in the first half under sloppy conditions. The second half was controlled by San Jose who held the lead 20 – 17 as time expired, play continued with a succesful try by San Jose on the outside to seal the win.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Fresno State 29 – UC Santa Cruz 27

Referee: Wilson, Dan

 

This was a game of two halves, literally. Santa Cruz opened the game with fantastic support, great ball movement and beautiful rugby. They two unconverted tries at the 8th and 13th minute. Unfortunately, I was told that they lost their kicker last week and those kicks proved costly. Fresno State had a hard time containing the Slugs and the difficulty showed in a yellow card for dangerous tackle in the 6th minute. Fresno State started to figure out that keeping the ball in hand, having their big boys up front run off of the left, right and left side again would work. They controlled a lot of the 2nd quarter scoring two tries, one converted. The Slugs also got one more try, with conversion. Halt-time FSU 10 – UCSC 17

 

The second half was much like the first half ended, with Fresno State controlling a lot with their big boys, while the Slugs were able to pretty ball with great support. The only blemish in the half was when a FSU player demonstrated his frustration after two beautiful cleanouts where he was the one being cleaned out. Yeah, he sat for 10-minutes. The try-zone was more favorable to Fresno State with three try’s scored, two converted, but the Slugs responded with a penalty kick and a converted try of their own.

 

Unfortunately, the missed conversions were the difference.

 

Final Score: FSU 29 – UCSC 27

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Fresno State Women 66 – Sacramento State Women 5

Referee: Jury, Jeff

 

Overcast, good turf, good running and hitting by both sides.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Humboldt State 32 – UOP 17

Referee: Richmond, Jeff

 

After 5 and a half hours of driving north through steady rain,

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the rugby gods intervened and reduced the downpour to a light mist.

 

Both teams came out to win the match with strong tackling and aggressive rucking. UOP was a bit too aggressive, earning yellow cards for high tackles. Humboldt put together some nice backline play, despite playing on a narrow football field markings. The coaches, players and fans made for a nice experience and worth the drive.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Humboldt State Women – Santa Clara Women

Referee: Richmond, Jeff

 

Match Cancelled

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Marin B 7 – Baracus B 19

Referee: Noonan, Michael

 

A very cold, wet and rainy day. Pitch was lined for football and soccer, and had to make due with cones for 50 M, 10 M, 22 and goal lines, end zones were only 5 M deep at best. The field was safe though.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Aptos 5 – South Valley 22

Referee: MacDonald, Neil

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

CSUMB 12 – Cal Maritime 42

Referee: Kenny, Stephen

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

EPA Razorbacks 48 – Diablo Gaels 0

Referee: Hinkin, James

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

EPA Razorbacks B 19 – Diablo Gaels B 0

Referee: Donnelly, Kevin

 

No comments.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Modesto 33 – Colusa 40

Referee: Wilson, Giles

 

Colusa travelled to Turlock and on winning the coin toss, elected to play with the strong wide at their backs. This suggested that a game of two halves would happen, but the reality was something of a variation.

 

Harlots started out strong, playing into the wind and built a 14-0 lead after 20 minutes. Colusa seemed to shake the travel out of their legs at that point and came close at the half with a 14-12 score.

 

The 20 minutes after the half also belonged to Colusa who built strongly with 4 more tries to lead by 40 – 14.

 

The Harlots came back alive with 20 minutes to play and managed to score three times to pull back to 33-40. They had left their comeback too late and couldn’t complete the comeback.

 

A fun, exciting game on a field that was in better condition than Murrayfield.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Napa Valley 0 – Humboldt 0

Referee: Rauscher, Eric

 

Game was canceled

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Sacramento Capitals 11 – Sacramento Blackhawks 22

Referee: Boyer, Rich

 

A wet winter’s day greeted both teams. The match was moved from the Capitals’ home pitch to Danny Nunn, which seems to be home pitch for both teams….This cross town rivalry promised to be an exciting match. It seems all players and coaches from both teams know each other and ref. Capitals got on the board early with a penalty kick after dual repeated shoulder charges by one Blackhawks player. No more would occur. Blackhawks responded with a crafty wipers kick just outside Capitals 22 and the wing made a deft pick up and dive try right against the touch line, conversion no good. Capitals responded with another penalty kick. The majority of the first half seemed to be: scrums. Sloppy conditions and sometimes silly decisions slowed the game down. Capitals dominated the scrums in the first half: skates come to mind. Capitals faced the wind the second half and quickly raised the score to 11-5 when big Vince (and I mean BIG) tapped on a penalty five meters out with an inevitable try the result. Conversion no good. Blackhawks finally had some good pick and drive, putting Capitals on the back foot, resulting in numerous penalties and a yellow card for a Capitals player who thought the Blackhawks ballcarrier was in the try zone so he fell on him and would not let go. Blackhawks back made a strong run off a pass and scored, conversion good. 12-11 Blackhawks, with the game heating up. Restart was delayed due to wet scorecard and an inability for digits to work correctly. Did I mention it rained and rained? The wind appeared innocuous, but it had an adverse impact on the Capitals when a kick for points was requested on a penalty about 35 meters out. The ball was kicked true, and it was going to be good for all the tea in China. A gust of wind prevented the ball from crossing and the Blackhawks were relieved. The last quarter saw Blackhawks on the front foot with a nice try by #13 Sione on a flat pass under the posts. Blackhawks had three more penalty kicks and, despite the wind at their backs, converted only one. Capitals rallied hard in the closing moments aided by numerous penalties and some wily play by veteran Mike Dopson. Eventually the conditions terminated the drive close to the try line. The game was played in good spirits. Thanks go to Jerry Ahlin and Rob Murphy for performing AR duties.

 

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Sacramento Lions 26 – SFGG 24

Referee: Akroyd, Phil

 

A/Rs: Jim Crenshaw and Eugene Baker.

Officer in Charge of Feedback: R. Scott Wood

 

Full-length studs, drenched during warm-up, pooling water on the field, parked next to an Arc. I miss this kind of rugby.

 

The Lions started out effectively, if not a little workmanlike in their style of play. They didn’t do anything too flashy, but they played well with ball in hand given the weather conditions. They did have issues with remaining on their feet at tackle/rucks, but continued to blame the footing which was odd, because the footing was fine for the SFGG players. The reluctance to stay on their feet got them into yellow-card trouble a couple of times which really did hurt them.

 

The Lions stretched out an early lead but playing one man short for a total of thirty minutes helped Gate work their way back into it. In addition, it appeared that Gate cycled in some players who were maybe surplus to requirements from their PRP squad.

 

Either way, Gate finished strong and having scored a try in the last minute, at 26-24 with time dead, they had a chance to tie the game and cost me a load of beers. Thankfully for me and the Lions, but unfortunately for SFGG, the southerly gale directed the conversion just inches to the outside of the right-hand upright.

 

The Lions got a scare and I got a closer game than I’d anticipated. I also got a good amount of feedback from Scott Wood, Jim Crenshaw and Eugene Baker. Mucho respect to those guys for putting up with the conditions when they could have stayed at home.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Sacramento Lions B 7 – SFGG B 31

Referee: van Staden, JC

 

En op die 8ste dag het die Here reën gestuur….

Dit was baie nat, maar net as n mens dink jy het al alles gehoor, dan kom nog n rugby-dag…

Na die 2de geel kaart, binne 7 min uit mekaar uit, duik die heelagter in n man se bene met geen en maar geen arms nie… Mens sou dink dat na 10 jaar se reffereeing, die manne moet weet dat ek n man van my woord is…

Met 3 manne in die bin, moes 12 hulle man probeer staan teen SFGG, en hulle het.

Na half tyd verloor Sac nog n man aan werks verpligting, en moes die wedstryd klaar maak met net 13 man. SFGG het hulle ritme gekry, bal begin wyd swaai, en van daar het die drieë in gestroom.

 

Dankie aan Eugene Baker en Jim Crenshaw, wat deur die reën gestaan het om my te help tot die einde… Jong manne, vat notas…. “”Respect get earned””

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Santa Rosa 32 – Life West 5

Referee: Zanarini, Tom

 

Torrential downpour would be an understatement. The drive up to Santa Rosa was a white knucklefest that I didn’t particularly enjoy. But, I made it in one piece to find both teams warming up in the rain. For Pete’s Sake Field is a world away from Humboldt’s Manila Island. It’s as if the field was chugging the rain by the gallon it was in such good condition. The match kicked off promptly at 11:30 and we were in for a great match. I didn’t know what to expect from Life West. I am happy to report that they are a hard running and well disciplined outfit. They matched Santa Rosa fairly well, especially for a new d 3 club. The rain never let up and neither did the contest. Overall a great game in perfect (rugby) weather. No sooner was I blowing the end whistle that I was in my car to assist Aruna at Treasure Island in his PRP match of SFGG v Denver. Not as wet on the island, and not a better contest than my previous match, unfortunately. But I was happy to assist Aruna and learn from one of Pelicanland’s best.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Santa Rosa JC 0 – Sierra College 0

Referee: Leisek, Joe

 

Rained out

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

SF Fog 0 – Redwood 40

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

Rainy day on Treasure Island. Redwood is dominating the first half and scores an early try, but there is aggressiveness from both sides. Around the 20th minute, a fight starts after a penalty taken quickly and a player not back 10 tackling. Punches are thrown and 2 players from Redwood are sent off. The game was much cleaner after that.

Despite playing with 12 players after a player was sin binned for a dangerous tackle, Redwood leads at the break 7-0.

 

Redwood dominated the second half, scoring 5 tries to nothing.

 

6 tries to 0.

 

Date: 02/08/2014

Sonoma State 90 – USF 0

Referee: Bertolone, Cary

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

St. Mary’s College B – UNR

Referee: Hettermann, Matt

 

UNR canceled on Saturday morning. Donner Pass was probably a mess.

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

St. Mary’s College C 0 – UNR B 0

Referee: Pescetti, David

 

Game was canceled

 

 

Date: 02/08/2014

USF Women 0 – UC Santa Cruz Women 17

Referee: Bernstein, Bruce

 

USF held UCSC from scoring for first 20 minutes, & played with a lot of heart.

However, UCSC was well-coached to keep their momentum alive by handing it to one forward as big as the other–all bigger than anyone on the hosts.

 

 

High School Matches

 

Danville Varsity Gold 25
Lamorinda Gold 3

Referee: Bryant Burns

In a battle of East Bay high school heavyweights on a absolutely soaking wet day, Danville prevailed. Although only 10-3 at half, the Oaks keep the ball in their (larger) pack, and simply ground it out.

A shout out to Ryan Luis, who does a lot of reffing on the junior circuit. A lot. On this dreary day, he did two games and touch judged another.

This Week’s Photo

 

As again there were no photo submissions this week I went with another symbolic picture, one of a pelican in the rain.

Pelican_in_the_rain

Hail, Pelicus!

For the Senate

Pelicus Pedem Referre

 

 

 

The Weekend Without Referees

HAIL PELICUS!

 

The Weekend Without Referees

 

Well, not quite, but February 1-2 was the busiest weekend on the Pelican calendar and many B side matches went uncovered. A number of stout pelicans doubled and even tripled up on the weekend to help out but, like every society in the world, we need more referees. If you have ever thought about taking up the whistle, striding nobly to the center of the pitch and taking command of a match pairing worthy adversaries, then please contact our Scott Wood at rscottwood@gmail.com . He will get you all the information you need to sign up and announce your availability on assignr, our game management software.

 

Of course, you will need to have completed the Level 1 course, but there are courses being taught all the time.

 

For those already on assignr please update your availability. Pete Smith does the assignments based solely on your listed availability and will not be chasing down referees in the hope that someone has a change of heart. This week is a full weekend as well so we will need all the bodies we can muster.

 

Hosts Needed For Visiting Referees

 

We urgently need volunteers to host incoming exchange referees. Hosting goes a long way towards fostering good will and is one of the considerations for choosing who we send out in exchange. We need one host for incoming Virginia referee Chris Davis who is coming in March. In March we will also host incoming East Midlands’ referees, so a number of hosts are needed as well as some who cannot host but can take our visitors around. Volunteers should contact Bjorn Stumer at bjorn.stumer@gsa.gov.

 

The Passing Of A Legend Whose Like Will Not Be Seen Again

 

Rugby Canada and the rest of the rugby world lost a great man when Don Whidden passed away. One way to tell the measure of a man is how he is spoken of when he passes and the Hail Pelicus had an inbox full of memories as soon as the word spread. He touched the lives of many pelicans so I will let them eulogize him in their own words:

 

Dr. Bruce Carter

I always thought of Don as an old world gentleman. It made me feel better to be around him, such was his energy and optimism.

Ours was a friendship where we met gradually – you know, when you see someone, learn who he is without being introduced, and then after crossing paths once or twice more a conversation ensues and it turns out that you both know each other by reputation and accomplishments, through mutual friends. And it’s like: why didn’t we initiate this friendship sooner?

This is the poem his wife was reading to him as he shuffled off this mortal coil:

Do not stand at my grave and weep,

I am not there; I do not sleep.

I am a thousand winds that blow,

I am the diamond glints on snow,

I am the sunlight on ripened grain,

I am the gentle autumn rain.

When you awaken in the morning’s hush

I am the swift uplifting rush

Of quiet birds in circled flight.

I am the soft stars that shine at night.

Do not stand at my grave and cry,

I am not there; I did not die.

 

Godspeed, Don.

Michael Malone

Don indeed was a gentleman in the finest sense of the word. I was fortunate to first make his acquaintance when I was asked to co-teach the old IRB Referee Trainer course with Tom Jones in Vancouver, BC somewhere around 2003. Mel Jones and Trevor Arnold also were part of that class. I had an especially enjoyable dining experience with Don and his wife that weekend at the usual dinner where the IRB picked up the tab. An absolutely delightful couple. It was always a pleasure every time our paths crossed thereafter.

 

I look forward to his wind on my face, his diamond glint on the snow.

 

Ray Schwartz

I will never forget, nor regret, the day

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Kat Todd dragged me off to Edmonton to spend time at the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2006. I get to St. Albert’s, arriving in time to see USA play Australia (a fabulous match!) grab a beer and head to the rail at the edge of the deck overlooking the pitch.

I settle in, to enjoy my first beer and first World Cup match and I hear from behind me, “Excuse me!?”

 

The most polite fellow, looked a bit like Dudley Do-Right, all regal and upright, and apparently I was blocking his view, the view he had so carefully mapped out. There was Don spread out across a table with a notebook and pad and pens. And a friendship began…

 

Don proved to be a very wonderful, loving, hardworking and caring friend to all Pelicans Refs in the few years we got to know him. . Don Whidden was missed and spoken of often at the Sacramento Valley’s Kick Off Tournament this last month. He attended and ref coached (his butt off) at 5 Kick Off Tournaments over 6 years. He also delivered lots of fine Albertan refs each time he came. What a personal treat it was knocking back beers with him in Rotorua in 2011!

 

We wish we had time, more time, lots of time. Times like those. Heck, any time with Don was always a blessing. He remains with many of us going forward.

 

Truly blessed by rugby to have known this man!

And now, the Main Event

 

High School Matches:

 

Saturday, the 5th Girls’ High School KOT.

Report from Bryant Byrnes:
This was a delightful and productive event- a win win win. The players had the opportunity to get in some excellent games and partake in one of the joys of rugby-the tournament. The coaches and parents were given a lovely day.

And the refs got some real work done. Like the Boys’ KOT, we use this as an opportunity for the old guys to work with the new guys in congenial circumstances. Thus the grizzled old silver backs (of which I am one, literally) coached those who are coming up. I must say that in the three games I coached, I and the ref agreed the procedure was most productive.

I praise Dave Williamson for running the refs and Karen Chance for putting on a boffo production.

Report from Joe Leisek:

 

Sunday, February 2
Raiders Practice Field, Napa
Napa Stormers 34 Montgomery Vikings 0

While Saturday was an unseasonably sunny, warm rugby day, Sunday was a beast. Cold, wind, and rain, lots of rain. Yet two varsity boys teams and their fans braved the elements to enjoy a morning match in the Napa Valley. It was the league opener for both teams. Now in their second season, the Stormers have established a solid, successful program. The Vikings have come together only in the last several weeks, but they are making progress – they played well considering their relative lack of experience. Players from both sides ran as often as possible, even with the wet conditions, until Napa closed things down late in the second half by keeping the ball close to the forwards. The Stormers are a well-coached, athletic, disciplined side with good technical skill on both sides of the ball. Enjoyable match with great esprit de corps on the pitch.

 

And the rest of the games…

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Olympic Club 17 – Glendale 27

Referee: Tucker, Chris

 

Good solid game between two well-organized teams, kicked off on TI after Gate made hard work of beating the visiting Santa Monica team.

 

Aside from a couple of dubious incidents, the game was played hard, fast and fair, with both sides competing hard for the ball at every breakdown.

 

The home side were up 9-3 at the half, but the first 10 minutes of the second half changed the run of play. Glendale — with their inside centre in the bin — started clicking, and quickly ran two tries over to take the lead. They never looked back, although a final try to OC to end the game made the score a better description of the competitiveness of the two sides.

 

Date: 02/01/2014

SFGG PRP – Santa Monica

Referee: Tetler, Jen

 

George did a great job reffing. SFGG pulled through at the end after being down most of the 2nd half.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

UC Santa Cruz Women 19 – UNR Women 15

Referee: Carter, Bruce

 

Another beautiful day overlooking Monterey Bay, the only surprise being a paucity of sailboats on the cerulean waters.

 

The Slugs’ pitch is in great shape and their fan base turned out in sufficient force to make it difficult to call the scrums together – they couldn’t hear me!

 

Early-season

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jitters and new-player-itis led to an uneventful first twenty, lots of scrums and penalties and no points at all. But by half time each team was finding their legs (and hands) and had scored a try, UCSC converting theirs.

 

In the second half, there was much more up-and-down the pitch play. I’d say the Nevada backs were more enterprising but the Slug forwards came through in the tight.

 

Overall, however, the difference was only in the kickers, as the home side converted 2 of their 3 tries, while the visitors were 0-for-3.

 

The crowd then thinned out for the men’s game, ably whistled by Stephen Kenny, and I was happy to video it from the conveniently located, adjacent hillside.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed the game, despite being three times the age of most of the players. May they mine the vein of rugby friendship for as long as I have been privileged to do.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Santa Rosa 50 – SFGG 5

Referee: Hinkin, James

AR: Bernstein, Bruce

 

Another postcard day at For Pete’s Sake Field in Santa Rosa as San Francisco Golden Gate RFC travelled north for a D1 clash. Driving up to the pitch I passed by the Charles Shultz museum and noticed that there was a kite stuck in a tree outside.

 

Nice.

 

The game started fast as both sides looked to press the pace. Unfortunately that led to more errors than the respective coaching staffs would have liked to see and subsequently there were a lot of restarts. A missed penalty to Santa Rosa kept the eggs on the scoreboard until Santa Rosa decided to try to feed their wing Vasi Navia and he obliged by racing in for a try. This would prove to be a good strategy. As the half wound down the teams exchanged a try each with only Rosa converting in a nail biting first 40 that finished with the score 12-5 to the home side.

 

The second half proved to be a much different story as the Rosa backs took over the game. With flyhalf Seva Leweni creating space and Navia finishing the Rosa back line had a half to remember. Leweni was tearing apart the defense with a show and go before dishing until SFGG closed off that option, so he opted to split two defenders and pass behind them to an onrushing center. Just about everything he tried worked and at the end Navia was there to finish. Navia ended up with six(!) tries on the day with about half being your standard wing in support doing his job tries while the other half he created on his own. A commanding performance. The forward pack did enough to secure the ball and I am sure enjoyed watching the fireworks that resulted.

 

Many thanks go to Bruce Bernstein for ARing.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Santa Rosa B 3 – SFGG B 25

Referee: Hinkin, James

 

A spirited B side match matched the intensity of the A side but revered the result. SFGG started a new face at flyhalf – I couldn’t get his name but I think they called him Johnny Nokia. He had a good game and with some work he might be able to make the A side.

 

The Santa Rose players were keen and well drilled but SFGG showed off greater depth in talent if not numbers as they took revenge for the A side loss.

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Cal Women 7 – Stanford Women 81

Referee: Hettermann, Matt

 

Beautiful day up in the canyon – chatted briefly with Mike Macdonald before the match, and it’s always a pleasure to ref with all of the support they give you at Cal.

 

Discipline was the big difference in this match – Stanford infringed less, and stuck their tackles. Cal did not.

 

Cal did have a standout #15 – some incredible line breaks. May be better used at #13 … Unfortunately most of their phase play was going backwards.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

St. Mary’s College A 103 – Sacramento State 7

Referee: Ranaweera, Aruna

 

The opening weekend of the USA Rugby D1A California conference was mostly one-way traffic. SMC led 68-7 at half and tallied 15 tries, of which 14 were converted by their prolific place-kicker. Recognizing a golden opportunity when we see one, the capable Assistant Referees (Giles Wilson and Dave Parkinson) and I used this match to work on our speed endurance.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

St. Mary’s College A 103 – Sacramento State 7

Referee: Parkinson, David

 

lopsided game from the start. teams were in a different class and the game got away from sac state quickly.

 

Date: 02/01/2014

St. Mary’s College B 91 – Sacramento State B 5

Referee: Parkinson, David

 

lopsided game, but generally clean and fun. SMC dominated for most of the game. Sac State was able to put together some good phase ball for extended periods, but didnt end up gaining much ground with their efforts. One red card for punches thrown (SMC #2).

 

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

St. Mary’s College C 61 – Fresno State 7

Referee: Wilson, Giles

 

SMC boast a large group of players and scheduled three sides. Fresno State have a number of players but not the cohesion displayed by SMC.

 

Both sides struggled with the tackled player releasing the ball when support was slow. 3 cards for SMC and 2 for Fresno came after repeated warnings. When the players set the ball further back and support was on hand, things worked better (either turnovers or better possession).

 

Final score listed may not be correct – I’m back at SFO and don’t have my score card.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

California 134 – Oregon St. 0

Referee: Lew, Tim

 

Cal vs Oregon State at Witter field for the season opener of the PAC 12 collegiate season. The game was dominated by Cal in all phases of play. Oregon never really had any attacking ball or even a chance at points the full 80 mins. Cal played strong multiple phase ball and used their gameplan to dominate.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

California B 134 – Oregon St. B 0

Referee: Boyer, Rich

 

Game played in good spirits. OSU never gave up.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

San Jose Seahawks 13 – EPA Razorbacks 26

Referee: MacDonald, Neil

 

No report received

 

Date: 02/01/2014

San Jose Seahawks B 24 – EPA Razorbacks B 37

Referee: Pohlman, John

 

EPA scored 6 try’s in the first half, led by some of their first side players. San Jose seconds finished strong with two try’s in the second half. Final score EPA 37 San Jose 14.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

South Valley 58 – Modesto 19

Referee: Tiatia, Nome

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

UC Santa Cruz 22 – Stanford 32

Referee: Kenny, Stephen

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Diablo Gaels 29 – Fresno 43

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

Game started well with two motivated teams, tries were quickly scored by both sides.

The game got a little bit messy after 25 minutes, both teams got tired and started to infringe more. Fresno led 24-12 at the break.

 

The second half was very balanced and we got some good rugby, despite a bit of aggressiveness by the players. Both teams scored 3 tries.

 

Thanks to Lee and Peter for ARing the game.

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Diablo Gaels B 0 – Fresno B 53

Referee: Ricard, Bruce

 

The game started at 5pm. Both teams didn’t have that many players and it was getting really cold, so we played only two halves of 20 minutes. Fresno scored 9 tries.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Sacramento State Women 30 – St. Mary’s College Women 40

Referee: Rauscher, Eric

 

This was a game of power vs speed. Sac State had the power and did a fine job of handling the rucks with lots of pick and goes and fine ball control. St Marys on the other hand made the most of their backs occasionally making line breaks with a bee line for goal. Both teams scored six tries so it was a very up and down the field game. The difference in the point total was that Sac State didn’t make a single conversion while St Marys missed only one.

This is St Marys first year in competition, and shows to be a very good team.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Sierra College 58 – CSUMB 0

Referee: Nguyen, Anthony

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Sacramento Capitals 23 – Vacaville 25

Referee: van Staden, JC

 

Ps – Detailed report to follow… 🙂 (Editor’s note: when?)

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Sacramento Capitals B 8 – Vacaville B 26

Referee: Byrnes, Bryant

 

 

Real rugby; full sides played with spirit.

Date: 02/01/2014

Sacramento Blackhawks 68 – Berkeley RFC 12

Referee: Coppinger, John

 

Blackhawks ran rampant in the first half to run out to a 54-5 lead at the break. Berkeley regrouped and actually won the second half.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Life West 58 – Reno Zephyrs 7

Referee: Leisek, Joe

 

The Life West Gladiators and Reno Zephyrs played a hard, fast game in brilliantly sunny conditions at Kennedy Park in Hayward. The score does not reflect the fact that Reno gave the hosts all they could handle. Though they traveled a long distance with just 15 players, the Zephyrs played at pace for a full 80 minutes, holding a tough defensive line and running the ball whenever they could maintain possession. However, the Gladiators created opportunities out of their opponents’ mistakes and used speed and size to move forward throughout. The hosts scored four tries in the first half and five in the second, to the visitors’ converted try in

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the second half. As has been previously reported in Hail, Pelicus, the Gladiators will not stay in Division III for long. Head coach Tez Molloy and his staff have built an impressive program with an excellent team. Big thanks to touch judges Brett Frazer and Akuila Uaisele of the Life West club. Both were a big help during the match. Brett is a Christchurch native who captained several Canterbury youth rep sides. One of his teammates was Andrew Merhtens.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Santa Rosa JC 67 – USF 0

Referee: Bernstein, Bruce

 

Pretty dominate game from SRJC playing as 15 versus USF’s few good players trying the best they could. Real good ball from SRJC halfback Eric & tough running by their small flanker taking the ball up off rucks. Also the best post-match food so far–great BBQ’d sausages.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Humboldt 22 – Mendocino 19

Referee: Zanarini, Tom

 

This weekend was supposed to be a weekend off to celebrate my 42 birthday with my wife in Bodega Bay. But, the rugby guilt got to me when Pete put out an All Hands on Deck call for refs this weekend. Not wanting to disappoint, I summarily dropped (rescheduled) my weekend away to my wife’s birthday weekend. So, all is okay. I drove up Saturday for the 4.5 hour trip. The thermometer read 28 degrees through most of Mendocino County, so I was a bit worried at my lack of layers. But, arrival in Humboldt saw sunny skies and 50 degrees, so again now worries.

Right, on to the match. The field: now that Marin can no longer play in Marin City, I hereby nominate Humboldt’s Manila Island field as the worst in NorCal. Can I get a second on that motion? I collected about 10 pounds of rocks from the field and did my best to level off the recently filled in gopher holes. No one broke an ankle, so I’ll take that.

Between the whistles: Mendocino seemed to have the momentum, dominating the scrum and breakdowns. But when HOG sent the ball wide, the attacked hard. A late attack by Mendo almost saw them break away for the win, but a knock-on with no advantage available required a whistle and the end of a very competitive match.

I did manage to sneak in a round of golf at Eureka Municipal on Sunday morning before my drive home. $25 for 18 holes is probably the best deal going. Any refs that golf; it’s a bargain so take your clubs.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Colusa 41 – Aptos 14

Referee: Bertolone, Cary

 

A great day for rugby, like every past Saturday. Colusa started strong and scored three tries in the first half, one by Dan Powers (flanker) and one by Pono (wing). Leading 36-0, Colusa finally gave up two late tries to Aptos, who never gave up and everyone had a good day of rugby!!

 

 

Date: 02/02/2014

Stanford 13 – Oregon State 20

Referee: Smith, Pete

 

Great game! Two evenly matched teams playing end to end rugby. The big #14 scored all three of Oregon St’s tries (one via the intercept). Stanford had the same opportunity, but the slippery ball went for a knock-on instead of a try. this game could have gone either way and truly came down to one play made and one not.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

UC Davis Women 20 – Chico State Women 33

Referee: Franzoia, Tom

 

This was an A side game

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

UC Davis 5 – Cal Poly 37

Referee: Akroyd, Phil

 

The first round of D1-A league play and this was a pretty spirited, although one-sided affair. Cal Poly never looked like losing and built up an 0-18 lead at half. They did stutter a little in their performance in the second half as we went 25 minutes without a score, but they then ran in a few late tries.

 

Cal Poly were a much more complete team with decent set pieces, seasoned fly-half and no real weak links. UC Davis had discipline issues with legal tackles and a puzzling kicking game. Overall, pretty responsive players, and decent skills, but could have and will be better as the season progresses.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Chico State 39 – San Jose State 0

Referee: Richmond, Jeff

 

Chico State dominated throughout with strong play by the forwards and weak tackling by San Jose. The Chico scrumhalf stood out with his shifty running and ability to create opportunities.

 

The B-side was a better game to referee and spectate. The only glitch was going to uncontested scrums early as the inexperienced front rows couldn’t bind safely. San Jose grabbed the lead but got worn down by Chico in the second half; Chico came out on top 17-5.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

UOP 5 – Sonoma State 86

Referee: Valerio, Stephen

 

First time I have been to UOP. A nice pitch, well-lined with proper posts, with still a little give in it despite the lack of rain. As far as the game, 2e have all been in these matches, it is part of a rugby players cycle of life. Sometimes you are on the right side of the scoreline, and sometimes not. Sonoma St sprung out to a 69-0 halftime lead and cruised to a 86-5 win.

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Olympic Club B 35 – Santa Clara University 60

Referee: Lane, John

 

No report received

 

 

Date: 02/01/2014

Fresno State Women 42 – Humboldt State Women 29

Referee: Jury, Jeff

 

Beautiful bright clear day in the valley. Good hits and coordinated running found the score Humboldt 17 Fresno 16 at half. The game was still tight with 13min. to go, HSU 29 CSUF 30. But the 10 hour ride caught up to the girls in green and gold with the bulldogs scampering a couple tries and one conversion for a final score of HSU 29 CSUF 42.

 

 

This Week’s Photo

Comes from the Girls KOT where referee Paul Hale speaks to the captains of Mother Lode and Berkley.

Girls KOT

 

Hail, Pelicus!

For the Senate

Pelicus Pedem Referre

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Vegas, baby. Vegas

HAIL PELICUS!

 

Vegas, Baby. Vegas

Once again the eyes of the rugby world focused on Las Vegas, NV for the fourth stop on the IRB Sevens World Series, the USA 7s. The US continued their mastery of losing games on the last play and kickoffs that don’t go 10 meters, but also showed some outstanding rugby. A frustrating weekend for the Eagles that ended with a well deserved Shield win over Spain. For a sense of the potential the USA has always had, note that three of the seven “best” tries were from the Americans:

http://www.irbsevens.com/destination/edition=4/news/newsid=2070123.html#seven+best+tries+from+las+vegas

In spite of the early start to this year’s 7s – due to not wanting to conflict with the Winter Olympics – the weather was perfect and the crowd was boisterous. All kinds of dignitaries, luminaries, missionaries and mercenaries converged on Sin City for the Las Vegas Invitational and the spectacle of the USA playing on home soil. Another record crowd beat last year’s total as this event keeps getting more and more popular. This is what it’s all about. The only sour note for this reporter was when some idiots tried, and partially succeeded, in starting a wave WHILE THE USA WAS PLAYING. These were American fans as well. Come on, people! The wave is cheesy enough as it is but this is your national team playing. Try to pay attention a bit.

Goggles The Mind

We have received word that the US will be participating in the trial of the IRB approved goggles that were detailed in last week’s Hail Pelicus. If they have the IRB stamp on them, play on!

News Flash! Referees In Short Supply

If you haven’t already made yourself available on assignr for the upcoming weeks, please do so ASAP. We are hitting the heavy part of the season when everyone is playing every weekend and we need more referees. If you are not on assignr or don’t know what it is please contact our Scott Wood at rscottwood@gmail.com .

Assignment Protocols

That being said, if someone calls you up and asks you to ref a local match, you MUST refer them to Pete Smith. If you are not officially assigned to the match then YOU HAVE ZERO INSURANCE COVERANGE AND ARE FULLY LIABLE FOR ANYTHING THAT HAPPENS. Moreover there are several other logistical reasons that come into play.

This is not something to take lightly. As stated, there are many factors that go into assignments including referee grade, availability, team level, status of the club, coaching, assessing, the phase of the moon, weather, and your astrological sign. The job is hard enough without

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rogue referees thinking that they are helping out a buddy and creating a situation where 2 referees show up for a game while another game goes begging, or refereeing an unsanctioned game.

Once again, YOU HAVE ZERO INSURANCE COVERANGE AND ARE FULLY LIABLE FOR ANYTHING THAT HAPPENS. If someone gets hurt and the family sues, the NCRRS will wish you luck. This does happen so please don’t take the chance.

And now

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on to the games… (Yes, a few were played.)

One from last week that was missed…

Date: 01/18/2014

Sacramento Lions 32 – EPA Razorbacks 19

Referee: Akroyd, Phil

Yellow Card to Sac Lions #8 Nemani Volavda for repeated team infringement (non violent).

Another somewhat competitive game in D1. As happened last weekend, the Lions set off early with a couple of tries and established a solid lead. They also had a much more solid platform than last week, as they could win lineouts and scrums. Lions led 13-5 at half.

Just after the half, EPA broke through the Lions defense and the captain just had to touch the ball down over the line but while being tackled he knocked on the ball, which would have made it a 13-12 game, but instead the Lions responded and pushed it out to 20-5. That really was the turning point.

From there, the Lions reverted to their entertaining, loose style of play and fullback Ratu Rinakama really turned on the magic. Final score 32-19 to the Lions.

The Current Slate…

Date: 01/22/2014

Cal Maritime 5 – Cal 101

Referee: Lew, Tim

Wednesday night game at Bodnar. Cal came out fast and stayed fast. They controlled set piece and open play. Open subs and very clean game.

 

 

Date: 01/22/2014

St. Mary’s College 123 – San Jose State 0

Referee: Williamson, David

 

Coached by: David Williamson

St Mary’s hosted San Jose St on a perfect Wednesday afternoon up in Moraga, CA. San Jose St was not in session yet so didn’t have a full team yet were ready early with the players they brought. St Mary’s needed some time for players to finish class and their coach to finish work so they trickled in a bit at a time. No matter, however, because as soon as the match started they were all business and ready to go.

The teams decided on 3 periods to get everyone a run so that is how we played it. St Mary’s were fast out of the gate and faster to the finish. Defensive discipline was key to their strategy as the Spartans were able to hang on to the ball for long stretches but they could not breach the Gael line and as soon as there was a turnover the ball was moved into space and the counter was on.

San Jose St never gave up and had some moments of pressure but were never able to convert. Inevitably St Mary’s were able to put more and more pressure on the San Jose attack until a turnover led to another opportunity for the home side.

Both sides played well and a credit to all the captains (each used several) for keeping the game fast and fair in spite of the difficult scoreline.

Many thanks to Bunny for his outstanding observations before, during and after the match.

 

Date: 01/24/2014

Stanford F/S 7 – San Jose Seahawks 56

Referee: Moore, Stephen

The match @ 6PM was actually Stanford v Seahawks, not Santa Clara. No incidents, clearly Seahawks were the stronger team, bit of run-away result for Seahawks their rucks and ball security were excellent.

 

Date: 01/24/2014

Stanford B 34 – Santa Clara University B 0

Referee: Levitan, Tony

A spirited mix of impressive athletic talent and — save a few players who are ready to nudge their way into each team’s A side — nascent rugby skills, all wrapped up in passion and drive made for an engaging 2nd side match on a chilly evening at Stanford. Stanford dominated the scoreboard (5 tries, 3 conversions and a PK) but Santa Clara’s never-say-we’re-done attitude kept us running up and down the pitch all evening. And while a parade of props who have never before bound onto a live opponent can cause refereerial indigestion, instruction was met by compliance and good natured competition, making for an enjoyable run for all.

 

Date: 01/25/2014

UC Santa Cruz 12 – St. Mary’s College C 53

Referee: Moore, Stephen

Plenty of energy from both sides, St Mary’s stronger at breakdown ruck maintaining and stealing possession creating more attacking opportunities. Good all round spirit, players, coaches and spectators. Ground well prepared. Nice experience.

 

Date: 01/25/2014

St. Mary’s College A 36 – Olympic Club 29

Referee: Zanarini, Tom

A great back to back contest between St. Mary’s and Olympic. SMC was coming off of a big win against SFGG while this was Olympic’s first match of the season. Tries were scored off of quick taps, interceptions and spinning the ball wide. The score was tied at 29 at the final minute. Olympic kicked to touch on a penalty and had a lineout. St. Mary’s came away with the ball on an advantage call, spun it wide and scored on a 60+ meter breakaway. Great rugby on both sides. Thanks to Kat for the evaluation and George O’Neil and Bruce Ricard for stepping up to AR.

 

Date: 01/25/2014

St. Mary’s College B 39 – Olympic Club B 29

Referee: O’Neil, George

No report received

 

Date: 01/25/2014

CSUMB 24 – USF 37

Referee: Carter, Bruce

This was the first official game on the brand-new, full-size, all-grass, gorgeous pitch at CSUMB, and a good crowd turned out from the campus dorms, all of which are in easy walking distance.

Those of us who played for Monterey in the eighties, which includes me and the coach of the Otters, Marc Ferguson, remember when this was the Engineers’ Field, one of the sorriest patches of semi-grass ever to host a rugby practice – the one saving grace being that the old park had lights.

I would put this surface on a par only with Stanford’s in Pelicanland.

The weather, undoubtedly shared all over the region, was too good to be winter: clear, bright, warm and with cirrus clouds lingering all day.

We rarely see cirrus clouds on the coast in any season. This ‘winter’, at least for the western seaboard, has been a false one. The cherry trees are blooming and we still have bees and hummingbirds in our yard. Trees, the leaves of which I finished raking up two weeks ago, are already green again.

So, too, rugby is born during January in California.

USF certainly had the run of the first half, going up 20-0.

The home team took inspiration from a waste-laying, try-scoring long run by the their #5, playing better and getting within 3 points, 27-24, with seven minutes left to play.

College rugby crowds make more noise than most. All of the players of both teams take inspiration from this fact. I made eye contact with a USF flanker just before a key scrum, crowd blaring. We agreed that we were happy to be part of the proceedings.

USF’s captain and #10, Joe (sorry, I forgot the surname) kept calm, electing to drop a goal at a penalty chance for a six-point cushion.

Then, with my watch already having beeped, the Otters attacked desperately, flinging the ball about with abandon.

As Chick Hearn would have said, there was a hot-dog pass with too much mustard that went astray. This same Joe got there first, hacked ahead, scored and converted his own try for a comfortable, thirteen-point final cushion.

The sideline grill was ready right on time for the celebration of the new season to continue, old friends and new acquaintances alike, dedicated veterans of the sport and newly-smitten novices, all wondering why every day cannot be a Rugby Day.

 

Date: 01/25/2014

USF Women – Santa Clara University Women

Referee: Hettermann, Matt

Game was canceled – “USF fails to meet the minimum roster requirements.” – presumably because they only have 13 players CIPP’d.

 

Date: 01/25/2014

Humboldt State 25 – Sierra College 23

Referee: Bertolone, Cary

A beautiful drive on a fantastic day for rugby; it felt like Santa Barbara. Humboldt started strong and were up 15-0 in the first 17 minutes. Great passing, long runs. Down 20-0, Sierra came back for a try by the forwards to make it 20-7 at the half. Sierra played better in the second half, tying it at 20 all with 5 minutes to go. Sierra converted a penalty kick for the lead with two minutes to go. Two addl penalties on Humboldt had them deep. With 1 minute to go, they pass the ball all the way out to their wing who runs 70 meters, they take it to the three meter line with no time remaining and Sierra loses their cool and commit 4 consecutive penalties, allowing Humboldt to finally punch it in for the win at the 43 minute mark.

 

Date: 01/25/2014

Stanford Women 12 – SFGG Women 70

Referee: Bryant, Lee

This was a friendly match between the current Stanford ladies and a mix of oldie’s but goodies from Nor-Cal and the Golden Gates Ladies. Smiles all around during this fun match as the newbies got their rugby legs. I guess not everyone was in Vegas.

 

This week’s photo…

… is a two for one deal meshing the past and the present seamlessly. As I couldn’t decide between the two, first we have Our Reporter with former Eagle Captain Brian Vizard, followed by Our Reporter with current Eagle Captain Todd Clever.

Hinkin Vizard Hinkin Clever

HAIL, PELICUS!

 

For the Senate,

Pelicus Pedem Referre