Location: Forest Park, Cricket Field
Score: Royals - 47, Hornets - 0
Hornets vs Royals 03/29/14.
The first round of playoffs went down on a cold, windy day at Forrest Park this Saturday. The #4 seed Hornets took on the undefeated #1 seed Royals. The Royals opened the scoring just one minute into the game with a drop goal catching the Hornets off-guard. The Royals showed why they were the class of St. Louis D3 rugby this year, dictating the tempo of the game and controlling field position and possession. Any time the Hornets were able to muster some momentum and string phases together, the Royals would ultimately force a turnover or mistake. Particularly when the Hornets spun it wide, the lack of speed to the breakdown lead to many Royals turnovers or penalties. A clinical performance from the Royals saw the final score 47-0. For the Hornets, best of the backs was super sub Water Polo Joe who had some great tackles and should have scored the only Hornet try of the game but for a failed grounding. Brad Kasper’s lineout throws were a revelation. Man-of-the-match was flanker Joey Smelt who was all over the field all day in attack and defense. Joey has really improved out of sight in the second half of this season and is now a leader of the forwards.
For the Hornets, the competitive season comes to an end and brings about a time of reflection. The Royals did not physically dominate the game, they just had a well-structured game plan that they stuck to and executed well. There is plenty of talent in the squad for the Hornets to win this competition again next year, we just need more experience and structure in our style of play. Congrats on the season boys, work hard on your fitness over the summer and come back ready to take what is rightfully ours next year!
Score – Royals 47, Hornets 0.
Scrums – Royals 9/11 (82%), Hornets 5/9 (55%)
Lineouts – Royals 4/6 (67%), Hornets 5/6 (83%)
Penalties – Royals 21, Hornets 17.