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Pacific Cup Kicks Off Thursday

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Pacific Cup Kicks Off Thursday

Danville heads up a strong field at the Pacific Cup. David Barpal photo.

The Pacific Cup invitational is set to kick off on Thursday, with eight HS teams from the western part of the United States.

Of the eight teams in the tournament, six are ranked by Goff Rugby Report, all highly. The Pacific Cup was devised for teams in the West who couldn't afford the time or expense to get to the HS NIT. Organizer Matty Sandoval, who coaches the San Diego Mustangs, said the tournament does not wish to compete with the NIT, which is a key reason why it was held on a different weekend from the NIT.

"We wanted teams to be able to play in both if they wanted," said Sandoval. No one opted for that ... this time.

The brackets are set, with one late addition. Peninsula Green had to pull out, and so the Bay Barbarians, a team made up of players from the San Francisco Bay Area, will take their place. The Barbarians play the Mustangs - the thinking here is that with the Mustangs on a down year, neither of those two teams is favored to win. Therefore, the champion will be forced to go through three difficult teams to win it all. And, in addition, the team that finishes 5th will earn a consolation trophy in recognition of a performance equal to that of the 2nd- and 3rd- place teams.

Here are the first day matchups, with Goff Rugby Report rankings (MS for Multi-School, SS for Single-School) listed in parentheses.  

9:00-10:20           Danville (MS#1) v. Fallbrook (SS#6)
10:25-11:45         Red Mountain (MS#5)  v. Santa Monica (MS#15)
11:50-1:10           Bay Barbarians v. Mustangs
1:15-2:35             Kahuku (SS#9) v. Back Bay (MS#4)

 

Danville won the Northern California club title just over a week ago, beating Granite Bay 34-31 in a thrilling final. Fallbrook won the Southern California Varsity Red title as a singe-school team, and lost in the SoCal club semis to Back Bay.

Red Mountain are Arizona state champions, while Santa Monica finished 2nd in last year's NIT in the club bracket, and while they lost in the SoCal semifinals, it was a 33-30 loss to eventual finalists Los Angeles.

Kahuku is the Hawaii state champion, and also beat highly-ranked United out of Utah in Las Vegas. Back Bay is the SoCal club champion.

May 8 will see teams in the Cup semifinals or the consolation semis. Saturday, May 9 will be the final placement games. Referees from Chicago, Northern California, and Southern California are participating.

 

Stay with Goff Rugby Report for all the news from the Pacific Cup.