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Defense Sees Falcons to MAC 7s Title

College Men

Defense Sees Falcons to MAC 7s Title

Like the headline says - defense the thing for Bowling Green.

Bowling Green will go to the USA Rugby 7s championships after the Falcons won the Mid America Conference championship.

Bowling Green defeated Central Michigan 29-5, Miami University 34-0, and Dayton 14-0 in pool play to advance to the semifinals.

In the semis, Bowling Green took care of Western Michigan 33-7, while Louisville won a tough one 28-19 over Miami.

In the final, Bowling Green and Louisville ended the first half tied 14-14. But some adjustments in the second half put the Falcons through 26-14. 

Adam Regini, Dominic Charnier, Chris Labadie, and Reginia again scored the tries for BGSU.

“Our defense has been pretty outstanding,” said BGSU Head Coach Tony Mazzarella. “In two games we were in our defensive end for about 75% of the time. But our defense held strong and kept us in the games. Even when we gave up a break, or a mistake happened, we got back and reformed. It was a good overall effort.”

The numbers back all of that up. Bowling Green allowed 26 points in the entire tournament, with more than half scored in the final.

“The offensive side is coming along, and days we focus on restarts we do well, and we had a pretty good weekend on the restarts,” added Mazzarella.

Along with the try-scorers, Ryan Steinmetz has been an excellent defender and has run well with the ball. Labadie’s work as a sweeper was perhaps more important than his try-scoring.

“I cannot remember the last time he missed a breakaway tackle,” said Mazzarella.

So with the win Bowling Green has earned what we expect to be an automatic qualifier to the USA tournament in Glendale, Colo. We say “expect” because officially USA Rugby has not said what the qualifiers are. The organization has a list, which most have been following as the list of qualifiers. But the MAC 7s is a true conference championship, and Bowling Green is making its travel plans.