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Colusa County Rugby Captures NCRFU Division III Championship

CCRFC defeats Reno Zephyrs 48-17

Colusa Rugger's Celebrate after Victory. (Photo by Christ Huffman)
Colusa Rugger’s Celebrate after Victory. (Photo by Christ Huffman)

Colusa County Rugby Football Club is headed to the USA Rugby National Championship Tournament after defeating the Reno Zephyrs in the NCRFU Division III Championship by a score of 48-17.  CCRFC will play in the USA Rugby “Sweet 16” representing one of the top 16 teams in the Nation.

In a widely publicized match by the Northern California Rugby Football Union, the undefeated Reno Zephyrs traveled to Danny Nunn Park in Sacramento and faced off against the 9-1 Colusa Plowmen.  CCRFC came back from a 5-0 deficit early in the first half to score 24 unanswered points to close the first half 24-5.

CCRFC has been labeled “straight forward, hard pounding rugby” which was on display in the match versus Reno.   A powerful forward attack with a fast, agile and shifty backline posted another 24 unanswered points on the board in the second half of play.   With a score of 48-5, the Reno Zephyrs attempted a late stage comeback.  The Zephyrs scored two late second half trys but Colusa foiled their comeback with a final score of 48-17.

The Colusa attack was powered by Gerardo Parra (3) and Juan Loza (2) who scored five of the eight trys.  The backline combined for six scores when Pono Ohumukini stole a pass inside the Colusa 22 meter line and ran it back 80 meters for a try.   Sione Latu Kula and Matt Huffman both scored from forward set pieces, where the powerful forward pack plowed the Zephyrs.

“Reno is a very solid, fast and agile team and we expected to get eighty minutes of smash mouth rugby from them,” said CCRFC President, Cody Beckley.  “Many people familiar with our league were expecting a Reno vs Colusa final, but thought Reno would advance.  Our guys worked hard off-season and in-season for the opportunity to bring the first NCRFU Championship home to Colusa.  Now, we are off to the next quest, the Sweet 16 of the USA Rugby National Championship!”

“I am incredibly proud of our team, the NCRFU Championship and they way our forwards and backs have come together as one family; a green machine powered by hard work, love for the game and love and respect for each other,” said forwards captain Dominic Santucci.  “But honestly, playing in that final was like playing at home in Colusa.  Our fans traveled to pack the sidelines and celebrate in this championship as much as we did.  At one point, I could hear Colusa fans on both sidelines screaming!  It’s a powerful component of the community and Colusa County Rugby that every player appreciates!  Continued community and employer support is going to make it possible for us to bring home the first USA Rugby National Championship title to Colusa County.”

CCRFC now enters the USA Rugby National Championship Tournament where they are slotted to play in the Sweet 16 on May 9, 2015 at Cal Maritime versus Salem, OR.

CCRFC vs. Salem, Oregon
USA Rugby National Championship Tournament Sweet 16
Pacific Northwest Division III Championship
Saturday May 9, 2015
12:00 PM Kickoff
California Maritime Academy
200 Maritime Academy Drive
Vallejo, CA 94590

Colusa County Rugby Football Club (C.C.R.F.C., Inc.) has been in existence since 1973. We are educating the community on a great sport and encourage everyone to participate in a fun and rigorous athletic activity. CCRFC has a mission to get more people playing rugby and educate our community through outreach.  We actively work with the Colusa community to develop a long lasting rugby tradition.  These programs involve many people of all athletic talents, sizes and shapes. In addition to strengthening our organization, we are actively putting programs in place to recruit youth to the sport of rugby.

 

Submitted by: Paul A. Santinelli

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