Fall 2010 Newsletter
Captain Nick Finger
President Sam Power
YALE 66 - URI 17
After losing to University of Rhode Island in a close non-league contest last spring, Yale came into this week's game against URI with something to prove. The Bulldogs did just that, amassing a total of 66 points with a 49 point margin of victory. The win brings Yale's divisional record to 2-0 and a share atop the NERFU standings with rival Coast Guard Academy.
Yale played inspired rugby from the opening kickoff, stifling the opposition's crashes by tackling hard and executing solid team defense. Yale's offense was equally potent: after excellent rucking allowed the Eli's to retain possession over several phases, Yale found the try zone when captain Mike Atkins '05 received a pop pass in traffic several meters out from fellow center Sean Walbridge '08. After this first try Yale continued to put pressure on the opposing defense, tallying another five tries to URI's one before the halftime whistle.
During the second half Yale continued to control the pace of play. And while the backline finished most of the phases, it was the Eli forwards who most noticeably outplayed their counterparts all game. Yale's dilligent practice on the scrum machine is paying off, as the pack won every offensive and several defensive scrums and consistently drove the opposing scrum back several meters, giving the backs more room to execute their offensive plays and putting URI on their heels.
URI's two second half tries were accurately described by Coach Pikul as "mental mistakes" on Yale's behalf, as opposed to defensive breakdowns. Yale's tries were scored by Atkins (4), Reagan, Cardone, Geist, Harper, Moscow, and Yeo. Cardone and Rob Smith kicked the extra points for Yale.
The Yale B side also played dominant rugby, soundly defeating the URI second side 36-7. More than a few Killer B's stepped up their play on Saturday, demonstrating the depth of Yale's roster. In the pack, Pietro "P-Train/P-Money" Deserio '07 made solid tackles all game long and provided great close support on offense. Second rower Scott "Beanpole" Proctor '08 had another strong game in the lineouts and made himself visible with hard tackling throughout the match. No. 8 Mark Cotter '08 also hit hard and pounded the defense with pick-and- go's off the scrums. After setting up Yale's last two tries in the A side, veteran flyhalf David Smith '06 anchored the Yale backline in the B side match. Scrum halves Jesse Wolfson '07 and David "Sideshow Bob" Light '08 - both new to the position - provided clean ball, allowing the Yale backline to attack with pace. Winger Henry Cook '06 had a breakout performance, scoring three of Yale's tries and eluding URI defenders throughout the game, and winger Aaron Friedman added another strong performance. Next up for the Bulldogs: Central Connecticut State University (1-1), a team Yale has not faced since the fall 2001 season.