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CWU Favored in NCRC 7s

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CWU Favored in NCRC 7s

The Northwest Collegiate Rugby Conference 7s championships kick off Saturday at Central Washington University in a two-day affair that is an excellent test not only of the programs’ skill, but endurance.
The hosts have won this tournament every year it’s been held, and are favored again this year, although teams such as Oregon State, Washington State, and Western Washington might have something to say about that.
“We always go into these tournaments with an eye to win it,” said CWU Head Coach Tony Pacheco. “We want to win, but we have to be smart about it. Let’s worry about Day One on Day One. Let’s get into the Cup Round, and then go on from there.”
CWU is one of the colleges that embraced 7s early, and they have produced some notable talent on the national team (Pat Blair), and close to it (Tim Stanfill, who scored two tries for the USA Selects on Wednesday). 
“Bob Ford and I just worked at it and wanted to continue to get better and make the team better,” said Pacheco. “We weren’t satisfied and guys know that if there’s a better player, that better play is going to start.”
Still, said Pacheco, he feels his team’s basic core skills, even though they practice them every day, could be better.
CWU will be without Zach Siemens and Tanner Barnes - both injured - but will be motivated to win if only to christen their new rugby pitch the right way.
Meanwhile several teams have shown flashes this fall, including an improving Boise State team. Western Washington has been running a U20 team out against opponents in British Columbia while sending the 1st 7s team to tournaments. What that means is a competitive week of tryouts going into this weekend’s tournament.
Washington State has played well of late and could be a dark horse to get to the final. But the smart money is that the CWU Wildcats not only make that final, but win it all.
Day Two of the NCRC 7s will be webcast live. Check back for the link.
NCRC 7s Pools:

Pool A

Pool B

Pool C