Fort Hunt Solid In NC
Fort Hunt Solid In NC
The Fort Hunt Warriors headed south this last weekend to Charlotte looking for good weather and good rugby. They found a lot of good rugby, some good weather, and most importantly a pair of clubs that hosted the touring Warriors side in the true rugby tradition.
On Saturday the Warriors arrived at Charlotte Catholic High School to find clear weather and warmer temperatures than home (Alexandria, VA). Charlotte Catholic’s excellent facilities included a visitor’s locker room which was a bonus for a visiting team that had just driven seven hours. The Warriors kicked off and fought a series of back and forth possessions until the strong Warrior defense began to put pressure on Charlotte Catholic. Zack Monson scored the first of his four weekend tries when he crashed over from the 10-meter line. As the game progressed Conor McManus and Travis Preston both scored nifty tries and Monson added the last try. McManus converted all four tries for a final of 28-0. Charlotte Catholic played strong structured rugby but were under pressure much of the day from the Warriors, keeping the ball from going wide and forcing it back in to the big men inside.
The JV match was a wide-ranging affair with both teams playing a large number of players. Charlotte Catholic held off a late Warriors surge to win that match 19-14. Both teams returned to the locker rooms and then headed to the school’s cafeteria, where the Charlotte Catholic parents had prepared a home-cooked meal of chicken, rice, vegetables, and bread that both teams, coaches, and parents enjoyed. Great fellowship all around as the day ended.
Sunday dawned to a different tune with torrential rain and temperatures dropping rapidly from the mid-40s into the mid-30s. The Warriors faced another strong local club in the Charlotte Tigers. Both teams had size and power and with the foul weather it was going to be straight-ahead rugby. The teams started out tentatively in the rain with numerous unforced errors and knock-ons. The Warriors played the Tigers mostly in their half at the start of the game and were able to score a pair of tries from Zack Monson and head into the half up 10-0. As the second half started the natural grass field was unable to absorb any more water and rapidly became a swamp.
Both teams played hard but were unable to develop any sustained progress. The Tigers were able to put together a few connected phases off a Warrior turnover and Tiger inside center Darius Law scored mid-way through the half. Fly-half Jack Williams converted the try and it was anyone’s game at 10-7. Both teams traded the ball back and forth as the weather rapidly got worse. The Warriors were able to keep the ball down in the Tiger’s end to finish the game as 10-7 winners. The second side match was cancelled on both teams’ and the referee’s mutual agreement for health and safety reasons. For the second time in the weekend the home side had prepared a most welcome post-game social. The Tiger parents had not only set up many tents, but also offered space heaters, blankets and lots of warm food for all of the players, coaches, and families. The highlight was authentic Carolina BBQ coupled with chicken wings, meatballs and other hot food. The Warriors got into their cars muddy and wet, but warm and fed and headed home after a great weekend of rugby.