Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Guilford Set to Play Elon in Seeding Match

Next Tuesday night (March 3) Guilford will travel to Elon University for a seeding match to determine the #1 seed in the USA Rugby South Quarter-Finals. The winner of the match will be the de facto NCRU Division 3 Champions. The past two Guilford-Elon match ups have been intensely contested affairs, with Guilford coming out with a 4 point victory in both encounters. (18-14 and 19-15)

Photo: Scrum; Guilford @ Elon 9-26-08

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Guilford Advance to South Quarter-Finals

Guilford – 33 Davidson – 0

Today the Guilford College Quakers qualified for the USA Rugby South Quarter-Finals with a big win over the Davidson College Wildcats.

1st Half
The match was certainly a game of two halves. In the first half the Quakers, who showed great tackling against UNCG last week, had trouble defending against the crash ball. Davidson used their large, athletic pack to punch the ball through Guilford’s forwards, keeping the Quakers on the back foot for much of the first half. The Wildcats nearly put up the first points of the match, but the Quakers caught a lucky penalty with Davidson just a meter short of the try line. Later in the half the Quakers began to utilize their backs and bring the game toward their style of play. Guilford would finally put points on the board when, with about 15 minutes to go, pack captain Andrew Slater stripped the ball in a tackle and sprinted 30 yards for a try. The try was converted by flyhalf David Mckindley-Ward, to give Guilford a 7-0 lead. Guilford struggled with staying onsides at the rucks for the entire half and after multiple warnings to the entire team, lock Will Dawson was sent to the sin bin for ten minutes. At the half Guilford held a one try lead with the score at 7-0.

2nd Half
The second half Guilford side put forth a far more impressive effort. The Quakers continuously attacked the Davidson try line by putting the ball through the backs hands. The second try of the game would come when center Bryce Bjornson broke through the Davidson line to score. The try went unconverted leaving the score at 12-0. Shortly after the try the match official sent off a Davidson player, for hands in the ruck, after multiple infringements. Guilford exploited this advantage, when flanker Andrew Slater unbound from a nearly wheeled scrum, pickup the loose ball and scored a try under the posts. McKindley-Ward converted the try again to give Guilford a 19-0 lead with around 15 minutes to go. Guilford’s better fitness and deep bench was apparent in the final minutes with the Quakers scoring two more tries in quick succession. The first came when scrumhalf Max Kochinke ran through the Davidson forwards to score a try which McKindley-Ward converted. With only a couple of minutes left the Quakers put together a string phases gaining good field position. Guilford’s flyhalf David McKindley-Ward then caught a pass on the outside after looping the centers and put the ball beneath the post. David converted his own try leaving the score at 33-0 were the score would stay for the rest of the match.

Guilford will play in the USA Rugby South Quarter-Final match on March 21st.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Guilford to Play Davidson In Matrix Finals

This Sunday at 1:00pm Guilford College (East Division #1) will play Davidson College (West Division #2) in the NCRU Matrix Finals. The winner of the match will advance to the USA Rugby South Quarter-Finals.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Pics From UNCG

Since the game was Sunday I haven't had time for a full match report. Here are some pics from the game.

Photo Credit: Mo Grumbly

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Guilford Go Undefeated in East Division

Guilford-28 UNCG-12

Guilford topped cross town rivals UNC-Greensboro today to seal their place as the NCRU East Division champions. The Quakers finished 3-0 in divisional play with wins over UNC-Pembroke, Duke, and UNC-G. Next week Guilford will play Davidson College the NCRU West Division runner-up to qualify for the Rugby South playoffs. Full match report of the UNC-G game will be posted soon.

Photo: Inside Center "Sunshine" Flanders Crashes Through the UNC-G Line.
Photo Credit: Mo Grumbly

Friday, February 13, 2009

Guilford to Play UNC-G in Final NCRU East Division Match

This Sunday at noon Guilford will play cross town rivals UNC-G at home. The game will be the Quakers final match in the NCRU East Division.

Photo: Guilford's vagabond fullback Maxwell George runs 100 meters for a try in Guilford's victory over UNC-G last fall.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Guilford Move to 2-0 in the East Division

Guilford-29 Duke-25

Last Saturday Guilford traveled to Durham for their second league game against Duke University. Though penalties plagued the Quakers early on Guilford was able to rally in the second half and come out on top with a four point victory. The Quakers had strong support on the sidelines from the many Guilford fans that made the drive to Durham to support their team.

First Half

Duke put the first points on the board successfully scoring a penalty kick after missing two earlier attempts. Guilford soon answered back however capitalizing on a Duke penalty to put the score at 3 all. The Quakers then spent nearly ten minutes unsuccessfully attacking from within Duke’s 22. No try resulted from the Quakers hard running and Guilford lost possession after a failed drop goal attempt from sophomore flyhalf Dave Mckindly-Ward. Again the Guilford team found themselves defending from within their own 22. Things turned from bad to worse when Guilford pack captain and flanker/eightman Andrew Slater was sent off for multiple infringements. The Duke side used this advantage to push in two tries with one converted, giving the Blue Devils a twelve point lead. With short time left in the half hard running from senior loose forward Matt Elverson gave the Quakers great field position. Within scoring range Guilford was finally able to utilize their backs, and captain and outside center Chris Pugliese was able to score Guilford’s first try of the match. A conversion by Mckindley-Ward tacked on an extra two points. The Quakers trailed by five points at halftime with the score at Duke-15 Guilford -10.

Second Half

In the beginning of the second half Guilford scored their second try when Andrew Slater ran straight through the Blue Devils blindside defense to score in the corner. Mckindley-Ward put the long conversion attempt through to give the Quakers a two point lead. Duke answered using their strong kicking game to gain field position. The Blue Devils used their position well and scored another unconverted try to give Duke a one point lead with the score at 20-19. The game continued back and forth until inside center Evan “Sunshine” Flanders broke through the Duke defense not only scoring a try but also centering the ball between the posts. Guilford’s 10 again put the conversion though giving the Quakers a four point lead. Duke once again used multiple kicks to test the Quakers back three. Fullback Joel Popkin showed great grace under pressure, and prevented a Duke try. Guilford would again score when Mckindley-Ward decided to quick tap off a penalty. He then made a skip pass to winger Cody Martin who placed the ball down in the corner to further expand the Guilford lead. David missed the difficult conversion to leave the Quakers with a nine point lead with around ten minutes remaining. Guilford would give up one more major penalty near their 5 meter line. The Blue Devils used their size to crash the ball through, but the missed penalty left the Quakers victorious with the Final score at Guilford - 29 Duke - 25.

David Mckindley-Ward was deemed Man of the Match by Coach Ben Snyder

Next Sunday the Quakers will face cross town rivals UNC-Greensboro at home for their final NCRU East Division Match.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Quakers Win Conference Opener

Guilford - 38 UNCP - 7

The Guilford Quakers opened conference play this week with a solid win over the much improved UNC-Pembroke Braves. This Spring marks the UNCP club's first season in the NCRU Matrix, yet the young team put forth an impressive effort, specifically with their lineouts and kicking game. The Quaker's put up an impressive defensive effort allowing UNCP only one try scored off multiple Guilford handling errors. Guilford's offensive effort was similarly strong with the side exhibiting both quickness and great crash running. The Quaker's had good ball retention and utilized their backs well.

Saturday's Guilford try scorers included flanker Andrew Slater, flyhalf Davie Mckindly-Ward, inside center Evan "Sunshine" Flanders and winger Cody Martin. Sunshine Flanders was Coach Hayden's pick for Man of the Match due to his hard running and all around strong play.

Next weekend Guilford College will travel to Duke University for thier second matrix match.

Photo Credit: Maxwell Beaudoin George