Vail blanks Glenwood Springs, 43-0 |

Vail blanks Glenwood Springs, 43-0

Vail Rugby1 BH 7-8

VAIL ” After two tough weeks with losses to Park City, Utah, and archrival, Aspen, the Glenwood Springs Defiance was just what the doctor ordered for the Vail Rugby Football Club.

Short on numbers, the Blue and White nevertheless recorded its first shutout of the year with a 43-0 rout of the Defiance Saturday at the Vail Athletic Field.

“With all respect to Glenwood, they are a developing team, as are we. We needed some confidence coming off two losses to two of the best teams in America,” player-coach Steve MacKinnon said. “Craig (Cameron) and James (Worrell) were out for two weeks, so with these guys back it made a huge difference.”

Cameron had two tries, while Dennis Gisch was Man of the Match was a hat trick.

“It was my first hat trick. I owe it all to the backs, though,” Gisch said. “We just strung them out really wide. They just couldn’t keep up with the speed. Glenwood put up a hell of a fight. I think we just had more talent on the field. They played a hell of a game. Hats off to them. They tackled hard, hit hard. It was a great game.”

Nuhel Gonzales score two of Vail’s first three tries. In between those two scored came a score from Tom Vallentine, making his 2006 Blue and White debut. Big Daniel Buckland scored a try for the front pack and Vail was off to the races. Phil Bennett capped the scoring with a try, and chipped in two conversions, further adding to his legend (at least in his own mind).

Meanwhile, the Blue and White’s defense did a nice job of containing the Defiance for its first shutout of the year.

“Brandon (McDonald) straightened things out in the back and they ended up playing real well,” MacKinnon said. “It was good to get Tom back from England, even though he’s from Australia. He made a big difference as well. He’s got a lot of speed.”

For Glenwood, the match was a good learning experience, according to Defiance vet Tim Swanson.

“Basically, we got all of our rookies in,” he said. “We’ve got eight or nine rookies who’ve never even seen a rugby ball. A few of the old guys played pretty well. We played pretty tough the first 20 minutes or so. Then they just ran us over with their backs.”

Vail (3-2) is off this week with its Hall of Fame weekend, while Glenwood hosts Aspen Saturday.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or

Vail, Colorado

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