Saturday, January 11, 2014

Stars Open Pool Preview & Game Schedules

Our timeline is finally shaping up (though still waiting on practice field confirmation as the final missing piece!) as USA Sevens sent out the Open and Elite pools/game schedules this week. There are some teams/times subject to change as the Redlands team in our open bracket was our Australians' original side that is no longer traveling.

Women's Open: Bracket A 

Pool A
Redland's Women's Rugby 7s

Pool B
Michigan Mutts
Las Vegas Lady Blackjacks
Brigham Young University
Dark and Stormy

Pool C
Kalihi Raiders Rugby Club
Minnesota Monstaurs
All Blues

Notable in this bracket are the All Blues team which won the USA Rugby National 7s Championship this past August (and whom my Chicago Lions Women's teams gave a good run for their money in a hotly contested pool play match with some questionable refereeing, Lions lost 22-19. The entire tournament Berkeley only had 29 points scored against them in 6 matches so we can safely say we were their toughest competition!). The Raptors if they are indeed Glendale's A-side studs will make for an exciting matchup though this could also be the Raptors 7s team based out of Chicago that's comprised of UIC alumnae and friends. That team played a more social 7s tournament schedule the last few summers but fared well and made/won a few finals. Brigham Young University beat my Beavers team in the women's open semifinals last year 10-7 on a last second play, while the Youngbloodz women placed 5th at 7s Nationals but are traveling minus a few current/former 7s Eagles but do count some current college All-Americans in their ranks. The Youngbloodz are a program I know quite from the last 2 summers of Midwest 7s. In 2012 Chicago North Shore and the Youngbloodz met in every Midwest tournament final and frequently squared off in pool play. This past summer my Lions team played them 14 times over the course of Midwest 7s tournaments. We met again at 7s nationals in the Plate semifinal - another hotly contested match in which we lost in an OT that never should have happened. Again poor refereeing where a clearly missed conversion kick was counted good but that's another story for another time and place!

Women's Open Bracket B

Pool A
Dog River Howlers
Maryland Exiles
Coven RFC
US Combined Services Women

Pool B
Tucson Women's Rugby
Black Mambas
Seattle Breakers
Laie Parkside Lions

Pool C
Anchorage Arctic Foxes
Japan 2

Notable here are the Dog River Howlers (our Wednesday practice/scrimmage opponents), a Canadian touring side that I've played several times at both the Las Vegas Invitational and Calgary Stampede 7s. They also recently toured Tobago, faring well, and usually count several current/former Team Canada 15s and 7s players on their rosters. The US Combined Services resurrected their program at last years LVI and 7s Nationals (another team my Lions met and defeated in pool play) and have counted contracted 7s Eagle Shaina Turley from their ranks. The Seattle Breakers have consistently played great 7s, coming in 3nd at Club 7s National in 2012 (narrowly beating my Chicago North Shore team in pool play that year) and they always travel well to the LVI. Their ties to Serevi have paid off and they were again a fixture at 7s Nationals in 2013. Rock may be the sister team to a men's side from Newfoundland that I've seen at Stampede 7s and could show well, though I'd expect Japan 2 to take that pool.

Silver Bowl Fields (across the street from the stadium)
Field 17 

Thursday, January 23rd
800 Michigan Mutts v Brigham Young University
820 Las Vegas Lady Blackjacks v Dark and Stormy
840 Kalihi Raiders Rugby Club v Raptors
900 Minnesota Monstars v All Blues
***920 Team Lola v Stars***
940 Redlands Women's Rugby 7's v Youngbloodz
1040 Michigan Mutts v Dark and Stormy
1100 Las Vegas Lady Blackjacks v Brigham Young University
1120 Kalihi Raiders Rugby Club v All Blues
1140 Minnesota Monstars v Raptors
1200 Team Lola v Youngbloodz
***1220 Redlands Women's Rugby 7s v Stars***
120 Michigan Mutts v Las Vegas Lady Blackjacks
140 Brigham Young University v Dark and Stormy
200 Kalihi Raiders Rugby Club v Minnesota Monstars
220 Raptors v All Blues
240 Team Lola v Redlands Women's Rugby 7's
***300 Stars v Youngbloodz***
Field 18
800 Tucson Women's Rugby v Seattle Breakers
820 Black Mambas v Laie Parkside Lions
840 Anchorage Arctic Foxes v Rock
900 Alcohooligans v Japan 2
920 Dog River Howlers v Coven WRFC
940 Maryland Exiles v US Combined Service Women
1040 Tucson Women's Rugby v Laie Parkside Lions
1100 Black Mambas v Seattle Breakers
1120 Anchorage Arctic Foxes v Japan 2
1140 Alcohooligans v Rock
1200 Dog River Howlers v US Combined Service Women
1220 Maryland Exiles v Coven WRFC
120 Tucson Women's Rugby v Black Mambas
140 Seattle Breakers v Laie Parkside Lions
200 Anchorage Arctic Foxes v Alcohooligans
220 Rock v Japan 2
240 Dog River Howlers v Maryland Exiles
300 Coven WRFC v US Combined Service Women

Friday January 24th Schedule
This appears to be the same schedule on both fields with Cup, Plate, Bowl, Shield in each bracket and then an overall Bracket A winner vs Bracket B winner championship match.
Fields 17 & 18

800 #27 QF Bowl #9 vs. #12
820 #28 QF Bowl #10 vs. 4th #11
840 #29 Cup QF #1 vs. #8
900 #30 Cup QF #4 vs. #5
920 #31 Cup QF #3 vs. #6
940 #32 Cup QF #2 vs #7
1020 #34 Shield Loser #27 vs. Loser #28
1100 #36 SF Bowl Winner #27 vs. Winner #28
1120 #37 SF Plate Loser #29 vs. Loser #30
1140 #38 SF Plate Loser #31 vs. Loser #32
1200 #39 SF Cup Winner #29 vs. Winner #30
1220 #40 SF Cup Winner #31 vs. Winner #32
#44 Cup Final Winner #39 vs. Winner #40

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