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Navy Over Iona In Solid Weekend Effort

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Navy Over Iona In Solid Weekend Effort




Navy won three games this weekend, beating Iona, James Madison, and James Madison's 2nds in a pretty successful weekend for the Midshipment.

The clash with Iona was worth a special note as Navy's scrumhalf Kevin Strehle played against his cousin and Iona captain Connor Buckley in what turned out to be a competitive family rivalry.  

The game started off to a fast pace when Navy's Erick Bleakley penetrated the line for a try in the 3rd minute. Iona's John Powers answered with a penalty kick shortly after in the 8th minute.

Navy's dominant scrummaging allowed for movement down the field which led to Navy's second try by Braedon Mead in the 10th minute. Iona's Buckley put the Gaels on the board with their first try after charging down a kick and scoring it himself.

After driving over and stealing an Iona scrum, center Joey Hobbs punched in Navy's third try in the 19th minute. Matt Mischler converted the try making it 17-8.

Navy's defense stayed strong keeping Iona out from scoring a try, but Iona's Powers was able to place three more penalty conversions through the post. Navy's Collin Argue scored Navy's fourth try of the half in the 38th minute after another powerful Navy scrum. The score was 22-17 in favor of Navy going into the half.

Iona started the second half with a try of their own when Buckley scooped up a loose ball and ran it in from 40 meters out. Navy responded with three converted tries of their own thanks to consistent pressure and scrummaging. Tries were scored by Braedon Mead, Adam Tounkara, and Drew McMurrain.

Iona's last points came off a penalty try in the 61st minute where Navy's Braedon Mead was sent off with a yellow card. Even with a man down, Navy's Frank Bell was able to score Navy's eighth try in the 63rd minute off a loose ball in play.

Navy's last try came from Mykol Brooks off a scrum set piece where he broke the line in the 77th minute.

“We were a step or two off from where we want to be today with too many handling and unforced errors," said Navy Director of Rugby Gavin Hickie. "At the same time, it is pleasing that all three of our sides performed and won today, competition within our squad is heating up.”

While Iona was close late in the game, Navy ran away with it, and perhaps that was fair as Iona has some work to do, and was much smaller than the more experienced and more powerful Navy team.

Buckley was sensational, and it was his play, more than anything, and with apologies to Powers, that kept Iona in the game.

The final score of the first XV game was 53-29 in favor in Navy over Iona. Navy's second XV won their first conference game against JMU first XV 31-13, and Navy's third XV pulled out a victory of 27-6 over JMU second XV.